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NZ motorsport patriarch Sir Colin Giltrap passes away

Legendary businessman and motorsport supporter Sir Colin Giltrap has passed away.

After a battle with illness following a fall, he died yeserday, aged 84.

Giltrap can lay claim to helping drivers – as a mentor and financially – for the best part of 40 years.

His services to the sport were recognised in 2012 when he was made a Knight Companion of the Order of New Zealand for his services to motorsport and his philanthropy.

The Giltrap family has supported many New Zealand drivers over the years, including Liam Lawson, Shane van Gisbergen, Scott Dixon, Earl Bamber, Brendon Hartley, Callum Hedge, Brendon Leitch, and Hunter McElrea, among others.

Sir Colin Giltrap also owned the New Zealand franchise of the A1 Grand Prix of Motorsport and was a patron of the McLaren Trust. Significant investment outside of racing also saw brought legendary golfer Tiger Woods over to compete at the New Zealand Open.

He was also recognised for his contributions to the Canterbury Earthquake Appeal and the Starship Foundation.

A car-mad Giltrap’s journey into business began in the 1960s when he co-founded Hamilton luxury car dealership Monaco Motors. From here, the company continued to grow, with the accrual of Matamata Motors and Coutts in the early 1970s.

European Motor Distributors Limited was formed in 1977, acquiring the distribution rights for Volkswagen and Audi. Schofields in Newmarket was the next addition to the business, while Audi, VW, Porsche, Rolls Royce and Bentley were moved to Great North Road for a new arm of the company called Giltrap Prestige.

The company continued to expand with the likes of Lamborghini, Toyota, Nissan, Mercedes-Benz and Aston Martin added to the portfolio.

In recent years, Sir Giltrap has handed the reins over to his sons Richard and Michael Giltrap, but he has remained involved in his business as a Director.

His Grandson Marco Giltrap won the 2023 Porsche Sprint Challenge Australia and shared Lamborghini Super Trofeo Asia success with Chris van der Drift in a Giltrap Grou-back Lamborghini Huracan.

Marco Giltrap is in Taupo with the Porsche Carrera Cup Australia for the ITM Taupo Super400 this weekend.

Repco Australia and New Zealand passes on its condolences to the family and friends of the Giltrap family.