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Preparations for the second Wheels at Wanaka event move into top gear today as vintage and classic vehicle enthusiasts converge on the town for this weekend’s tractor, truck, machine, motorbike and earthmoving extravaganza.
This year’s event will also feature the winner of the 2020 Historic Motoring Awards UK Car of the Year, "the Oxford" alongside more than 140 other Land Rovers and Range Rovers.
National Land Rover Owners Rally organiser Rod Corbett said it was hugely significant to have the Oxford in Wanaka as it was arguably the most famous Land Rover in the world.
The six men that drove the two trucks were from Oxford and Cambridge universities.
The Cambridge has been lost for years, as was the Oxford, until Englishman Adam Bennet rediscovered it in pieces on St Helena Island in the South Atlantic ocean about four or five years ago and had it rebuilt, he said.
To coincide with Wheels at Wanaka, Mr Corbett organised a National Land Rover Owners rally, which involved three one-day safaris over high country stations in the Upper Clutha area which would raise money for Wanaka Search and Rescue.
Mr Corbett said it was the largest gathering of Land Rovers and their owners ever held in New Zealand.
Mr Corbett described Land Rovers as the farmer’s friend as they were "the first affordable four-wheel-drive that could be used in all situations".
"There is probably not an area of rural New Zealand that Land Rovers have not been driven over or worked on," he said.
The Oxford would be the lead Land Rover in the Wheels at Wanaka parade on Saturday and Sunday.
The biennial event opens tomorrow and runs until Sunday.