President's Report - February 2013

Greetings All,

Welcome to 2013, the year in which the centenary of Canberra will be celebrated. On 12 March 1913, foundation stones were laid by the Prime Minister (Andrew Fisher), the Governor General (Lord Denman) and the Minister for Home Affairs (King O’Malley), after which the Governor General’s wife (Lady Denman) stood atop the foundation stones and proclaimed:

I name the capital of Australia – Canberra

The foundation stones are not sign-posted, but can be seen on the lawns in front of Parliament House. There is also an exhibition, currently on display in Parliament House, about the foundation stones - worth a look in Canberra’s centenary year!

I hope you all had an enjoyable, safe and relaxing Christmas-New Year break – did Santabring anyone a new car for Christmas? Not me, but the rest is all true, apart from a minor mishap on Christmas Eve – I backed the 508 out of the garage and confess that I made contact with my son’s 406. Dents to both vehicles, except that in the case of the 508, I was able to push the rubber bumper bar back into shape, with just a couple of minor paint chips remaining to tell the tale. Not so lucky with the front wing of the 406 – good old fashioned steel does not easily ‘pop out’ when dented. The rear parking sensors in the 508 activated, of course, but I didn’t react quickly enough!

In the latest issue of the NRMA members magazine, the NRMA announced Best car Awards for 2012. Despite a dozen or more categories, with 3 place-getters named in each, only one award went to a Pug – 3rd prize went to the 508 Allure in the category of ‘Best Large Car Under $60,000’. What I found most interesting (or should I say, sad), was the identity of the first and second placed cars in the category. The winner was the Ford Falcon G6 EcoBoost, and second place was the Toyota Aurion AT-X. As it happens, my next door neighbour is a Toyota salesman, so we plan to do a comparison between the Aurion and the 508 – to be reported in the next issue of Roar.

Good to see a Peugeot presence in the recent Bathurst 12 hour race – two factory RCZ’s, with a team of 6 drivers (3 from France and 3 from Australia), were competing in an invitational class for cars under 1600 cc, which included a Lotus Elise and a Lamborghini Gallardo, neither of which finished! In fact the Lambo only managed 11 laps. Consequently, the two Pugs, which were powered by the RCZ’s 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine producing 190kW @ 6500rpm, 290Nm @ 3500- 5500rpm, finished first and second in class and a creditable 16th and 23rd overall.

Our first club meeting for 2013 will be at the Weston Club at 8pm on Tuesday 26 February, with dinner from 7pm. So, why not come along and join us for a drink and a bite to eat to kick start our club year?

Our first club event for the year will be a French car drive on Sunday, 24 February, to Millpond Farm near Braidwood, to see an exhibition of antique toys and dolls in the gallery, as well as some antique cars and carriages. See their website for more details: www.millpond.com.au.  The plan is to meet in Braidwood at the bakery at 9.30am for coffee, then head out the farm (about 10 mins away), returning to Braidwood for lunch. Our thanks to Lisa Molvig, from the Renault club, for organising this interesting drive, as well as others later in the year.

Keep on Pugging,

Brad Pillans

Picture of Brad