Despite the storm that ravaged Auckland and Northland for the previous two days, and the closure of the main arterial road north, the Kamo Touch-a-Truck Show returned to Whangarei, attracting a record crowd to the popular show.

Show organisers calculated that a crowd of 4600 attended the event on Sunday 29 January, at its favoured venue, Hurupaki School, just outside of Whangarei. That’s almost double the number who attended the show when it was last held at the same venue in 2021.

The storm-related closure of SH1 at the Brynderwyns prevented some Auckland-based entries from getting through.

But there were still 48 entries in the show with plenty of trucks and heavy machinery for kids of all ages to clamber into, climb over, and create a cacophony of air-horn orchestration, a unique feature of the family-orientated and interactive show.

Also on display with a significant and popular presence, despite enduring a hectic two days leading up to the show, were the emergency services – police, ambulance, and fire. All proceeds from the charity show were split between the Kamo and Ngunguru fire brigades. Organiser Andrew Ivey, a serving police officer and volunteer firefighter, estimates that the record attendance raised $10,000 for the brigades.

A feature of the show, and something different for the industry, was the Mainfreight-sponsored Class 2 Heavy Traffic accelerated licence qualification provided by Forward Transport Training. The scholarship award seeks to assist with recruitment and training. This year’s recipient was 22-year-old Rihanna Caie.

Andrew Ivey said he was delighted with the show’s success, particularly with the unprecedented weather event leading up to the event and a covid-related break in 2022.

He thanked those who attended, including the “army” of volunteers, and suppliers, emergency services, and principal sponsors—Mainfreight, Fulton Hogan and TWL.

Kamo Touch-a-Truck Show 2023
Award Winners

Truck of the Show, People’s Choice Produce Connection Hino driven by Cameron Hanley
Truck of the Show, Drivers’ Choice, sponsored by TWL Abbot Holdings Western Star Logger
Best Curtain Sider, sponsored by Repco/Air Connect Mainfreight Scania driven by Matt Hudspith
Best Logger, sponsored by TWL Douglas Logging Kenworth driven by Marsden
Best Specialty Rig, sponsored by Northern Rural Haulage Douglas Logging Kenworth bin crane driven by KJ
Best Line Haul, sponsored by Bell Transport Mangonui Haulage Scania driven by Kurt Grace
Best Tipper, sponsored by Get Delivered Nationwide Load Pilots Northern Rural Haulage Kenworth driven by Jacob Ashby
Best Tractor Unit, sponsored by PTS McFalls Fuel Mercedes driven by Josh Tweedale
Best Other Unit, sponsored by MAN Trucks The Bog Doc Scania driven by Andrew
Best Kenworth, sponsored by Commercial Diesel Ltd Douglas Logging Kenworth driven by Marsden
Best Mack, sponsored by Motor Truck Distributors Northland Sandblasting driven by Daniel Tupe
Best DAF, sponsored by Commercial Diesel Ltd Northern Rural Haulage driven by Jock Mark
Best Fuso, sponsored by Keith Andrews Trucks Mini Machine Hire Contracting driven by Riley Nicholson
Best Scania, sponsored by Scania Mainfreight driven by Matt Hudspith
Best Volvo, sponsored by Motor Truck Distributors Golden Bay Cement driven by Neville Chapman
Best Freightliner, sponsored by Keith Andrews Trucks Mainfreight driven by Sam
Best Isuzu, sponsored by Commercial Diesel Ltd Virgin Concrete
Best Western Star Abbot Haulage
Furthest Travelled Tony Galbraith International driven by Vic Hungerford
Best Fleet, sponsored by Training 4 Safety Mangonui Haulage with 5 entries
Best Fleet 2nd, sponsored by MAN Trucks Douglas Logging with 6 entries