By Brendan Rees
For Cranbourne historic car enthusiast Phillip Barrow, a love of racing runs in his family’s blood.
He raced his beloved FJ Holden at the Historic Winton – Australia largest all-historic race and display event where owners of historic racing cars and motorbikes from the 1920s to the 1980s gathered on the 17-19 May
He took out the Car of the Meeting award for the best presented car more than 40 years old.
Phillip said he was honoured: “It was a lovely unexpected award.”
Phillip’s father built the race car at home in the back yard starting in 1963 and finishing around 1980.
“It is always a pleasure driving my old girl. I grew up with the car,” Phillip said.
“Everything is as it was with the old girl, the car is good enough and it is all you need…..to win.”
His father raced in 1981 and Phillip took over racing the car in 1988.
In 2006, he won the NSW Club Championship – the same year his father died.
Tradition continues, and Phillip does all his car work himself.
“It is a family sport and I grew up with car racing,” he explained.
“Everyone gets involved and the sport is passed down from parent to son or daughter. Young people need to be involved or the sport will die.”
The family is so into the mint green FJ, that Phil made a replica “FJ” bed for his son Noah.
Phillip has just started racing again after taking a break in 2013 and returning to the track in Warwick, Queensland in July last year. This will be his first race in Victoria in years.
During his final race at the Winton Motor Raceway, he said the front right hand wheel hub broke – “nearly lost a front wheel but managed to stop it just in time.”
“That was a little dampener on a top weekend.”