Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park

NZ's premier motorsport and driver training facility


2020 Taupō Historic GP

Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park, Taupō

18/19 January 2020



At the suggestion and with the enthusiastic organisational support of Jim Barclay and Tony Roberts, former directors of the long-running NZ Festival of Motor Racing that ran at Hampton Downs from 2010 to 2016, the fourth Taupō Historic GP has been expanded from previous years’ editions of the annual gathering of historic racing cars to also celebrate a dedicated marque of car – Alfa Romeo.

Alfa Romeo will be the first of what organisers of the annual event at Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park, Taupō intend to be an annual marque celebration reflecting the tradition of what is now the country’s foremost motor race meeting exclusively dedicated to historic racing cars.

An Aerial Highlight

However a highlight of the Sunday of the two-day meeting on 18/19 January event, to be held as usual on the Wellington Province anniversary weekend, will not be on the track but in the skies above Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park, Taupō – an aerobatic display by the acclaimed Royal New Zealand Air Force Black Falcons aerobatic display team.

The recently-announced 2019/2020 Black Falcons team comprising qualified flying instructors from Central Flying School and No.14 Squadron is currently working up their display routine in the Manawatu skies above RNZAF Base Ohakea.

The 2019/2020 Black Falcons are made up of Squadron Leader Paul Stockley (Falcon 1), Flight Lieutenant Shane Huisman (Falcon 2), Squadron Leader Mary Robertson (Falcon 3), Squadron Leader Jimmy Peters (Falcon 4), Squadron Leader Sean Perrett (Falcon 5) and Squadron Leader Jimmy Davidson (Falcon 6). Team Manager is Warrant Office Dave Sleator.

“The T6-C Texan II is an ideal aircraft for formation aerobatics and a lot of work has gone into designing a display sequence that shows off the unique capability of the aircraft,” says Squadron Leader Paul Stockley.

“The RNZAF Black Falcons encapsulates, in a publicly entertaining format, the professionalism of the RNZAF. We are not only showing the air power capability of the aircraft, we are also representing the military training, character and skill of everyone in the Air Force to the New Zealand public.”

The Racing

The land-based historic machinery on display and being demonstrated throughout the two days of competition is head-lined by many notable and valuable Alfa Romeos. Included amongst them is the incredibly rare and valuable 1930 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 Gran Sport Supercharged belonging to the world famous Southward Car Museum at Otaihanga in the Kapiti Coast District.

Along with a collection of racing Alfa Romeos put together by the hard-working committee of the Alfa Romeo Owners Club of NZ, races over the two-day event will be for:

  • Formula 5000s, the iconic stock-block 5-litre V8 single-seater category that dominated single-seater racing in NZ, Australia, the United States and the UK from the late 1960s to 1976;
  • Historic Muscle Cars and Historic Saloon Cars, the FIA Group 2 and Group 5 touring cars that contested the New Zealand Saloon Car Championships in the late 1960s and early 1970s;
  • Formula Juniors and Sports Racing Cars from 1958 to the late 1960s;
  • Historic Formula Ford 1600s from 1967 to 1987;
  • The wild “Allcomer” Sports Sedans that entertained New Zealand crowds from the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s; and
  • Tranzams, the V8-engined high performance Grand Touring race cars created by the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) that raced in New Zealand for the NZ Tranzam Championship in the late 1980s, the 1990s and early 2000s.

Qualifying for January’s Taupō Historic GP meeting starts at 09:30 on Saturday 18th with preliminary races for all categories from 12:30 that afternoon. The racing re-commences at 09:15 Sunday morning with the Historic GP race for Formula 5000s scheduled to start at around 2:30 p.m.

General Admission adult prices are $20.00 Saturday, $25.00 Sunday and $40.00 for a weekend pass. The souvenir programme featuring comprehensive histories of the categories racing, costs $10.00. Included in General Admission is car-parking (including to the Main Straight embankment) and access to the Pit Lane Complex First Floor Tauhara Suite and rooftop viewing areas, the pit/paddock, and all usual GA spectator areas.

Additional information about the RNZAF and the T-6C Texan II               

The RNZAF is made up of 2500 personnel across multiple trades and a variety of capability platforms that, combined, are a multi-faceted military organisation that is well-equipped to support New Zealand and respond quickly to situations both at home and overseas.

The RNZAF Black Falcons fly the Beechcraft T-6C Texan II.

The T-6C is a two pilot aircraft powered by a Pratt & Whitney PT6A-68 turboprop engine capable of producing speeds up to 316 knots (585km/hr) between 0 and 31,000 feet. The T-6C is equipped with Martin-Baker ejection seats and a modern integrated avionics suite with a Head Up Display and Flight Management System.

It is a purpose-built military training aircraft, equipped with a glass cockpit, a full suite of comm-nav equipment and a pressurised cockpit. The T-6C is fully aerobatic and can withstand ‘G’ forces from +7.0 to -3.5.

All of these features combined make the T-6C an ideal aircraft type for military flying training and the conduct of close formation aerobatics.

The T-6C is used to train RNZAF pilots on their Wings course, and is operated by No. 14 Squadron based at Ohakea. As part of a complete training package, this advanced aircraft is supported by two flight simulators and avionics desktop trainers.

For more information on the RNZAF Black Falcons – contact:

Emma Horsley

Senior Communications Advisor – Central DPA, Defence Public Affairs

New Zealand Defence Force

Mob. 021 409 033

For more information on the 2020 Taupo Historic Grand Prix race meeting – contact:

Chris Abbott


TMP Limited (Owners and Operators of Bruce McLaren Motorsport Park, Taupō)

Mob. 021 994 777


  • Photo 1 and Photo 2 – caption: The RNZAF Black Falcons
  • Photo 3 – caption: The start of the 2018 Taupō Historic GP race. Photo credit: Jim Lester of TWINCAMera Photography – Images of speed –
  • Photo 4 – caption: Dale Mathers, 1969 Ford Mustang Boss 302. Photo credit: Jim Lester of TWINCAMera Photography – Images of speed –
  • Photo 5 – caption: FIA Group 1 1974 Alfa Romeo GTV 2000 115
  • Photo 6 – The Southward Museum’s 1930 Alfa Romeo 6C 1750 Gran Sport Supercharged


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