President's Report - July 2009

Greetings All,

Early rain did not deter the French "troops" at the annual Battle of Waterloo event which was held on the lawns of Old Parliament House on Sunday 21 June. Once again the French were victorious over the British - 31 cars and 6 bicycles on the French side versus 26 cars and 1 bicycle on the British side. As usual our club BBQ tent did a brisk trade throughout the morning and early afternoon and I thank Rick and Ros Phillips for organising and running the BBQ. I also thank Shannons for sponsoring the event, which allowed us to run a raffle of French wine, with 12 bottles going to 12 lucky participants, regardless of their allegiance.

This month, as usual, Barry McAdie and I attended the annual Bastille Day lunch at the French Embassy, as representatives of the Renault and Peugeot clubs respectively. It was a cold, fine day but French red wine and nibbles kept us warm. Although we were not invited to display any vehicles this year, we hope to be able to do so next year.

Nothing like an annual rego check to find out about unexpected defects, especially when you have forgotten until the rego has actually expired. I took our 306 HDi for an inspection, recently, not expecting any problems, only to discover that the brake lights were not working. A quick check revealed that the fuses were OK, so I sought the help of Bill McNamee, still anticipating it would be a simple fix. Bill immediately suspected the brake switch and, indeed, that turned out to be the culprit. However, success did not come easily and more than one hour and some skinned knuckles later, the job was done. The brake switch is almost unbelievably difficult to access short of removing the whole dashboard, which we were not prepared to do, so Bill had to resort to endless contortions of fingers, hands and tools to accomplish the feat after removing the covers around the steering column.

To Bill's credit, no four letter expletives were uttered during the entire ordeal, despite extreme provocation. Our next club meeting will be held at 8 pm on Tuesday 28 July at the Canberra Services Club in Manuka, with dinner in front of an open fire from 7 pm.

Keep on Pugging,

Brad Pillans

Picture of Brad