I’m a little later with this than normal, and a lot has already been written about Dubshed 2013 – the new venue, cars, winners, scandals, atmosphere etc etc. But here I go anyway, better late than never!
This year was the fourth (or forth!) year of GTINI’s Dubshed event at the Kings Hall. Having been lucky enough to attend all 4, I can honestly say it has become my favourite show of the year, this year overtaking Ultimate Dubs in my estimations.
As I have mentioned before, GTINI always get the weather for their shows – even when it looks bleak – as evidenced by Connor and I nearly boiling at Castlewellan last year in the heavy clothes and boots we put on to accomodate the rain when we left Craigavon. This year was no exception – long time rival show UCS Larne, which has been on the same date as Dubshed for 2 years, was postponed due to the snow 2 weeks earlier. All seemed lost, surely the sun that helped make 2012 such a success was doomed not to appear this year. But no! GTINI’s resident witch doctor (yes – the secret is out) must have performed his non-rain dance spectacularly as the skies were clear again!
Dubshed has grown steadily every year, from humble beginnings in a couple of small sheds to this year in the new Pavilion at the Kings Hall. Most of us had not seen the new hall before and found it hard to get our heads around until we actually saw it. The huge hall was absolutely brilliant, large enough to accomodate loads of cars and trade stands and giving the show a really professional feel, reminiscent of Ultimate Dubs. I did miss the atmosphere of last years locations – I enjoyed going from hall to hall wondering what you would discover in the next one – I felt some of the charm and history of the old halls was lost this year but that was just a personal preference and the new hall was stunning, if a bit chilly! Some of the small halls were also still used which was nice for nostalgic eejits like me!
This year those lucky enough to be accepted to show inside had to bring the cars in the day before, while the outdoor spaces were filled on Sunday morning. We had last minute issues as always and arrived a little later than everyone else following a spectacular wheel bearing failure (after 17 miles) and rescue by the AA – but that’s another story!
I was delighted to have had the Vento accepted for an indoor spot. Joining me on the Shed Sixty2 stand were regular show companion Fluff in his red MK5 GTI, with freshly powdercoated wheels looking amazing and first time Shed Sixty2er Richie in his red VRS Octavia on Porsche BBS Sport Design Wheels.
At the last minute, Brian was asked to represent detailers Pure Finish on their outdoor trade stand and his car looked gorgeous as always. As we had more space around us than originally planned, we ended up with fellow Lurganer Clare Toman’s Beetle beside us – newly painted and with new wheels it has been totally revamped for this year. Creaney’s black MK5 on hydraulics and Toner’s red MK4 were also nearby – quite the Lurgan reunion in that part of the hall!
As Dubshed has grown, it has attracted more and more enthusiasts from England/Scotland/Wales and has deservedly become one of the must-do events of the season. That tradition continued this year with a large contingent of mainlanders arriving on the ferry, including show cars on the Kleen Freaks and Revo stands and notably, several Scottish cars which were parked next to the Shed Sixty2 stand in the main hall. Of course Trix’s incredible, UD winning MK3 ended up directly beside the Vento! Makes you wonder why you bother sometimes! Of course, I’m joking – its a testament to GTINI and how brilliant the show is that they can attract such high quality cars – and at least my satin paint didn’t look as bad as gloss might have directly beside such a nice car!
The standard of cars was higher than ever this year – everyone has obviously been as busy as us all winter! There were some brilliant cars outside too, as well as a BMW display, demonstrations by the Fire Brigade and the traditional ‘Scrap the Jap’ for charity. The Raffle Lupo was also in attendance, to be raffled at the end of the year and judging by the amount of spectators I’d say a huge sum was raised for the NI Hospice this year which is great!
As regards the Vento, unfortunately, I hadn’t time to do too much more work between UD and Dubshed. I got the L200 wheels powdercoated again and put back on, as well as fitting my leather doorcards and getting a few interior bits (headcloth, A pillars, handles etc.) sprayed satin black. Next on the list is to get the electric windows wired in, since my new doorcards have no place for the poverty-spec winders and I have been forbidden from drilling holes in them! Hopefully I’ll get some more done before Castlewellan but I was happy with how she looked on the day.
Some of my preparation time before the show was taken up by getting a trade stand ready. This year I decided to launch a small business called ‘Metalquirk’ selling handmade automotive jewellery and accessories made from old car parts, fabric, tools etc. I will hopefully be writing a full article about it soon. In the meantime if anyone has any queries or would like to buy anything they saw on the day feel free to contact me! I had a very successful day – lots of interest and great craic chatting to loads of people. Unfortunately it meant I wasn’t able to see and participate in the whole show as I normally do as I was stuck in one spot all day!
Much has already been written about the Car Culture photographer and model who caused problems on the day and I’m sure most people are tired of hearing about it by now. I will just say what I would have said if I had got this report on time and leave it at that:
Arguably when you put your car into a show there is an element of implied consent to some touching and even accidental bumping into cars. I know with my satin paint and leather roof people are curious and the car gets touched a lot. I don’t love it but I’ve accepted it to an extent. But I certainly did not and would not consent to the level that this club went to – asking their model to sit on/touch cars without the owners permission.
My opinion on ‘promo girls’ is that there is a time and a place – maybe events held at night but not necessarily at a family oriented show on a Sunday afternoon when many participants and spectators bring children with them. In saying that, many girls (BCS and Revo, among others) were appropriately dressed and conducted themselves very well, so I have no objection to them.
The behaviour of this club was no reflection on GTINI, who did their best to negate the possibility of cars being damaged with signs and announcements asking people to respect and not touch the cars.
Congratulations to Richie from our stand who picked up Runner Up Octavia and Shed Sixty2 regular Scotty who got Runner Up Polo.
I promise we will have the camera fixed for the next show so I won’t have to use rubbish phone pictures or steal other peoples!
Another brilliant show from the GTINI crew, massive thanks and well done to them for an extremely well run show, great weather (yes I’m sure they arranged it!) and heres hoping for even bigger and better next year!