The Edmonds family, from left, Ella, J.D, Wayne, Bayley and Carol, with Omerta at the New Zealand Antique and Classic Boat Show at Lake Rotoiti on Sunday. Photo: Jessie Johnston.

Stoke family wins best restoration at boat show


The New Zealand Antique and Classic Boat Show attracted the best of the best for two days of impressive boating action.

Around 130 clinkers, steam launches, classic motorboats, sailing dinghies and, of course, the owners, made their way to Lake Rotoiti last weekend, including Wayne and Carol Edmonds from Stoke.

Omerta, their 1920s Gentleman’s Racer, was a thing of beauty as it sat glistening in the sun, so it was no surprise when it was awarded the prize for Best Restoration.

They purchased the clinker a year ago out of Auckland, immediately getting stuck into the task of restoring her to her former glory.

Carol came across the craft on an online auction site after Wayne had been looking for the perfect restoration project for some time, this boat ticking all the right boxes. “Wayne’s had a magazine with this shape in it since about 2006,” says Carol.

While the Omerta has maintained her original motor, seats, hull and some brass work, Wayne’s year- long quest to complete her restoration has involved a number of helping hands, including the boat building skills of Peter Murton.

While Wayne did the sanding, Peter rebuilt the decks before a friend at Custom Colours varnished the craft.

They also sourced the remaining brass pieces needed for the exterior and dials from Canada and Australia.

Wayne says launching the Omerta has been the most enjoyable part of the restoration process, although they had a few teething troubles with the motor to start with.

With a bach at Lake Rotoiti that Wayne, Carol and their three kids visit every second weekend, Wayne says the Omerta will certainly get plenty of time out on the water.

As for taking home the prize for Best Restoration, “We’ve been to every boat show, and I’ve had other classic boats on display before, but this is the first award we’ve won,” says Wayne. “I was quite surprised really, didn’t expect it but it’s nice to be recognised for the effort you put in.”

The Jens Hanson trophy for Best Vessel Overall went to Malolo, owned by Max Cumming and Ra Tangaroa from Russell.