WHEN Stuart Price broke his back in a workplace accident some years ago, he had just about given up on life, let alone the prospect of ever walking again.
But fact is stranger than fiction and in the end, it was his determination to restore a car, of all things, that motivated him to get up off his backside, quite literally, and get on with living.
It’s no wonder then that he will forever have a soft spot for a 1976 Triumph Stag which took him seven years to bring back to showroom condition.
Last Saturday, he rolled out the striking-looking sports car in Ferrari yellow, together with some other cars owned by members of the Bass Coast Historic Automobile Club Inc to provide a blast from the past for show goers.
But few, if any, knew the story behind the car.
“The car was original when I got it back in 1995 and it still is apart from the colour which I changed from Mimosa yellow to Ferrari yellow.
“The engine’s the same, although I had the 3 litre V8 completely rebuilt. There was no rust, it had never been in an accident but every panel on the car was dented in some way and it needed a lot of work.
“When I broke my back, I was told I might never walk again and the fact is the car saved my life.
“Most of the time I was working on it, I was dragging myself around on my back underneath it. But there were things you had to try and get up to fix.
“Slowly but surely I started to regain full movement as the restoration project continued. It really motivated me to get going with that and the rest of my life.”
There’s a story behind every car owned by the 460 members of the Bass Coast Historic Automobile Club, maybe not as dramatic as Stuart’s story, but just as compelling all the same.
If you’d like to know more, or fancy joining the group, they meet at the Wonthaggi RSL on the 1st Tuesday of each month.
Or better yet, contact Daryl Minter, club registration secretary on 0418 133 161.
The group has a twilight cruise to Inverloch coming up on Saturday, January 28, the day before the Wonthaggi Show and Shine. Maybe the distinctive yellow Stag will be along for the ride.
The car that saved his life