The Three Mustangeers

Published March 12, 2016

Way back in 2014 possibly earlier three locals were dreaming of owning the soon to be released first ever factory made right hand drive Ford Mustang.

Ford were putting out a 50th anniversary Mustang in 2015 to celebrate the success of the quintessential American muscle car and this sixth generation version was going to be made to suit New Zealand and Australian drivers (along with the British and other markets). The gossip round the traps for those interested was that you had to get into a Ford dealer quick smart and place a forward order to secure a vehicle. Myself, Ian Scott and Graeme Churchill did just that and somehow managed to get at the head of the queue. Colours and other specifications had to be sorted out, deposits paid, extras added and then the long started with dates of delivery promised then changed until 2015 had nearly expired. Over this time us three had bumped into each other on various occasions and ascertained that we had all ordered the same version and in the same colour so three “deep impact blue” V8 fastback GT’s were coming to Oakura – so why?

Graeme Churchill’s Mustang story begins in 1965 when he saw his first Mustang and wanted to own one from that day. It had been on his bucket list for a long time and not wanting to drive a left hand drive model, it has been a long wait. When Ford announced they were going to produce a right hand drive model Graeme thought “now is my chance!” After a brief discussion with wife Laurel it was all go. The Graeme Churchill name went down on the waiting list, the deposit was paid and the wait began. Graeme says the wait has been worth it as the Mustang has exceeded all his expectations and he feels he is “living the dream”.

Ian Scott’s Mustang story also begins in 1965 with a dream to own a right hand drive model. It was all thanks to the 60’s movies with boy racers driving around in Mustang’s living the “good life”. Obviously Ian didn’t buy a right hand drive Mustang in 1965 but he did meet Margaret and he did buy a Ford Falcon Futura – right hand drive and so began his love of the muscle car. When Margaret and Ian started their family the Futura wasn’t a suitable “bassinet” carrier and the family moved on to Fairmonts. Over the years Ian has owned many Ford’s but has aways hankered for that Mustang so when the rumours of a right hand drive model was first circulated on the net, Ian was into Energy City Ford to get more information and get on the “Mustang list”. Ian was able to celebrate a very special birthday with the arrival of his Mustang and he has enjoyed driving it ever since. He says it has lived up to his expectations and beyond with perhaps the exception of not having anywhere handy to drive “real fast”!

My Mustang story begins with a humble Ford Cortina way back in the 80’s – I learnt to drive in a Ford! I have no particular allegiance to Ford or any make of car but it kind of tickles me that my first ride was a Ford. I was 19 before I had my first ride in a sports car and that was a Porsche 911 in the Adelaide Hills. I was definitely hooked on sports cars following that experience. I never ever thought I’d own a sports car of my own. Dave, my husband has a passion for Jaguar’s and in recent years I have enjoyed regular outings in that particular marque. I learnt to drive on the quiet country roads of coastal Taranaki and there are many long straight rounds connecting one town to another between Stratford and Okato. I learnt to drive fast and regularly clocked 100 miles an hour and l loved it (the poor Cortina!) We didn’t live in such a PC world back then and there certainly wasn’t any fear on my part about going fast and when you think how unsafe cars were, probably a bit reckless but I’m glad of that freedom. Over the years I have never had another Ford to drive except my son’s Festiva (doesn’t count) and every Bathurst I would barrack for Holden (that might change now). So why a Mustang? I’m still not really sure except having read a few novels with heroine’s riding off into the sunset in Mustang’s caught my imagination and every time I saw a left hand model or converted model I would oggle it enviously. It seemed a match made in heaven when I was turning 50 and so was the Mustang – two peas in a pod! And I love it!