PEOPLE say I’ve got the best job in the world, and in many ways it is.
I’ve said plenty of times the best thing about this job isn’t the cool new cars we get to drive or the amazing places we get to drive them. No, it’s the people we meet along the way: the characters I’ve come across in my travels and the hard-working geniuses who make our aftermarket industry so bloody great and exciting.
Sadly, I lost one of those great folks recently. Ian Glover was a mate and mentor and someone who I have learnt a lot from over the years. Ian lost his battle with cancer in July, and from the amount of tributes that have flowed in I won’t be the only one to miss him.
Ian was the second editor of Overlander 4WD Magazine back in the early 1980s and went on to be the editor of Four Wheeler Magazine. He also spent time working in public relations for both Land Rover and Mitsubishi in Australia.
I first met Ian when I was working at Federal Publishing and the then editor of Overlander, Fraser Stronach, sent me on the launch of the TDI Defender in Far North Queensland. This was during Ian’s time at LRA. I was young and didn’t know many people in the industry, so when all the journos paired up with each other from the drive program I was the odd one out and ended up in a car with Ian.
I learnt a lot over those few days: 4x4 driving techniques as we travelled up the Bloomfield Track, bush skills, and a bit on how the 4x4 industry works.
In later years when Ian was at Mitsubishi and I was editor of Overlander 4WD, we had a then new NP Pajero on test and were planning a long distance trip with it. Ian proposed we search for David Carnegie’s Patience Well in the Gibson Desert and he would join us, and that trip remains one of the most memorable I have done.
We’ve remained mates ever since and I’ve often called on Ian for advice, as there wasn’t much about 4x4s or the Australian deserts he didn’t know.
Ian was on my mind as I was driving though the Simpson Desert last week, referencing his books on the deserts for information. It was almost as if he were still riding shotgun, just like that Defender launch back in the day.
Rest in peace, old mate. You’ll be sorely missed.