Hot rod read

Castlemaine’s Rocket Rod is an icon in the world of hot rodding and now the story of his life has been comprehensively documented by his daughter Allison.
After much extensive research, Allison Hadfield, a librarian at Daylesford, has written The Mad Scientist of Australian Hot Rodding: Rod Hadfield – her father’s biography.
The new book published by Renniks Publications was launched with fanfare in Chewton on June 30.
Rod is the first to admit he is delighted and honoured by his daughter ‘s achievement in penning the 185 page book that he says contains treasured images, good laughs – and some details that have surprised even him.
“I’m very, very proud of the work she’s done. It’s taken her two years and I didn’t even know for a long time that she was doing it,” he says.
A large number of guests attended the launch at the Hadfield’s Chewton property – home to Rod’s famed hot rod collection and a popular destination for hot rodding devotees from around the nation.
“I’ve always thought it was a story that needed to be told,” Allison says.
“For years and years I’ve thought someone should write his biography. He’s led a very interesting life, overcome a lot of obstacles to get to where he is, but it was only about two years ago that I actually put the two things together – that I should be the one to write it.
“Now that I’ve got the book in my hand, I’m just over the moon.”
Several of the state’s hot rod clubs and some of Australia’s leading hot rodding writers and editors were present for the launch which also saw the surprise unveiling of a new work by acclaimed local sculptor, Chewton’s Richard Yates.
Allison has dedicated The Mad Scientist of Australian Hot Rodding to her mother, Rod’s wife Carol Hadfield who laughs when it’s noted that she is generally acknowledged as the quiet background achiever, often responsible for holding the show on the road.
Volunteers with Mount Alexander Animal Welfare assisted in the kitchen at the launch as a means of raising funds toward the work of the local organisation.

Eve Lamb
Journalist and photographer Eve Lamb has a Bachelor of Arts (Journalism) degree from Deakin University and a Master of Arts (Professional Writing) from Deakin University. She has worked for many regional newspapers including the Hamilton Spectator and the Warrnambool Standard, and has also worked for metro daily, The Hobart Mercury, and The Sunday Tasmanian. Eve has also contributed to various magazines including Australian Cyclist.