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Mighty Mack stars in Easter parade

Popeye Bowden is all smiles in Central Park, celebrating the return of the Uncle Plugger’s fully-restored Mack Superliner. Photo TWH

The highlight of the Bourke Easter parade was the towering Mack MKII V8 Superliner truck, which took pride of place bringing up the rear of the cavalcade of vintage and veteran cars.

Although there were fewer walking groups and displays this year, there was an impressive array of restored cars, tractors, trucks, and equipment. The parade was led by members of the Edwards family, with people coming from across Australia to take part in an Edwards family reunion.

It was Plugger Bowden’s mighty Mack that brought the glamour though. Restored to showroom condition, the Mack holds a Guinness world record for the longest trailer pull. That record, set in 1994, is the stuff of legends and on hand to tell the tale was Bob Hayward who was in the cab the day Plugger hauled the almost half a kilometre long train over the levee bank with a tow load of 29 trailers and more than 500 tonnes.

Bob has since been a large part of the post-record life of the truck, preparing displays for the many shows it travels to and documenting its restoration.

Also at the parade was former Bourke boy and Toowoomba mechanic Dean Conway, who restored the engine, and taking pride of place behind the wheel was, Plugger’s nephew Popeye Bowden.

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