2007 Annual Rally
The weather forecast was for hot weather again as we prepared for our 30th Annual Rally, celebrating 100 years of the DOUGLAS. This year, Australia Day fell on the Friday and so we put together a three-day package of activities. We began collecting our Club urns, fridges, etc, on the Thursday and by early afternoon we had most of the 'guff' at the Rally Site ready for the onslaught of machines and their riders. Marty had also delivered his glass-fronted fridge to the Quokka Pavilion and we stocked it up to ensure a ready supply of 'cool ones' for the next day. Barlens had delivered the chairs, tables, etc and so all was set. The Ducats ('Senior') had arrived on the Wednesday along with Bob Condie and his mighty Indian Scout, but not many more arrived until the Friday morning.
Friday's forecast was for 34 degrees. The rallyists and happy campers began arriving in the morning. Steve, Lyn and Col manned the registration desk and, after setting up camp, most punters reported to them for registration, before starting to fettle their machines for the arvo run.
At about 1:15pm, the Rally Co-ordinator took his podium and loudhailer, and welcomed one and all to our 30th Annual Rally. The President was reported to be fettling an Indian Outfit and promised to meet us at Bungendore, the afternoon tea stop on the run. By the allotted time of about 1:30pm the Grand Marshal had rallied his marshals and headed them off for the run. First off were the veteran, vintage, military and outfits. Then the order for "start your engines" was given and the rest of us were off to Bungendore via the Federal Highway, Mac's Reef Road and Bungendore Road through Smith's Gap. 'Yours Truly' kicked the Super Rocket into life and off we rode. Although the 34 degree heat was a bit oppressive, the ride to Bungendore was delightful. I followed Mr Brock on the Vincent Comet for most of the ride and enjoyed the sound of the powerful 'one lunger' ahead. On arrival at Bungendore, most riders partook of a cleansing ale at the Pub, a pie and cool drink at the Pie Shop, or a coffee at the cafe. The array of bikes parked in the back street and the vacant paddock were an impressive sight.
After an hour or so, I grabbed the loudhailer and 'rallied the mob' for the return ride. We had a spot of bother getting one of the marshals going (that magnificent Brough Superior), but after a push and a bit of persevering the 1000cc SS80 burst into life and sped off to get to his corner. Unfortunately, several riders had headed off before him so problems were afoot for them. To add a further complication, I noticed another of our marshals had 'failed to proceed' just near the airport! When I got to the allotted 'Brough Superior' marshal point, there he was dutifully attending to his marshalling duties (well done that man!) However, when I got to the left turn onto the Federal Highway there was no marshal and about six riders just in front of my Super Rocket 'rocketed on' heading for parts of Gungahlin that I had never ventured into. I headed left and when I got to the Flemington Rd turn off, I sent the marshals on that corner (Mark Fairweather and Karen Bolton) back to the previous corner to head the following riders in the right direction. Dean on the Vincent Rapide took over at the Flemington Road turnoff. Luckily, Mick Gentleman had been one of the earlier riders that 'pushed on regardless' into Gungahlin and after a bit he was able to turn a few riders around and back to EPIC. Other 'out of town' riders eventually found their way to EPIC none-the-worse for the experience and a little wiser on the back roads of Gungahlin.
It was a very pleasant ride for most, despite the heat and 'locally disoriented, unmarshalled' riders. But there were also some significant mishaps. Russell B on the backup truck/trailer had a very busy time. His customers included the wayward marshal's Royal Enfield (blown Head gasket), A prewar Harley (rear cylinder problems), the Brough Superior (suspected magneto problems), Norton Dominator (not running right), BSA A10 (nasty noises in engine) and Norton Commando (ignition dead). In fact we had to send out President Pete with the trusty Packard backup trailer to assist. What this meant was that the unexpected run on breakdowns led to too many riders being left in the heat for too long. Our apologies to those affected. Future Rallies we will ensure that two backup trailers are available at all times, with adequate drinks, etc for the riders.
Back at the EPIC campsite, campers and others put their machines to bed for the night and settled down to a few quiet drinks, an informal BBQ and some great evening entertainment. Some repairs were made to the wounded bikes. The Norton's ignition problem was found to be a broken lead on the Boyer. It was repaired and the contended owner dutifully rode the bike home having effected the repairs personally, only to hear some significant engine noises as he neared home; he had forgotten to turn the oil tap on, resulting in a cooked engine. An easy mistake to make Col, given the circumstances (see below hard luck award!). The evening's entertainment was provided by our Triumph rider and crooner-extraordinaire, Charles Davey. I understand that it was a great night, ably assisted by some throat lubrication offered by Mrs Victoria Bitter and some South Australian Tawny! Mind you, I had a complaint the next morning that the Rally Port was 'off'; but only the third bottle, the first two were fine (ask Marty van S and Geoff D)
Saturday morning saw more rallyists and campers arrive and register. The ride was out to Gundaroo Wine Bar, via Federal Highway and Gundaroo Road, for morning tea and back. There were two options for the return run: a short and long option. The short was a 'backtrack' of the way out and the long was via Bungendore Road, Mac's Reef Road and Federal Highway. Grand Marshal Dick had mustered the marshals by 10:00am and off we went at about 10:15am, led off by veterans, vintage and military bikes. The rest were soon away, with yours truly changing from the Super Rocket twin of the previous day's ride to the newly rebuilt '29 Sloper. Two kicks of the starter saw her jump into life and off I went. There were a couple of machine stoppages along the way to Gundaroo. The most notable being the lovely Indian Scout from Brisbane that had spat a couple of rear axle nuts and spent the rest of the run on the backup trailer.
At Gundaroo we all had a cooling beverage or two. The main street was again an impressive sight, with bikes galore. The wine bar proprietors were content with trade and after a prompt by the bloke with the loudhailer, Grand Marshal Dick again mustered his marshals and sent them off for the return ride. On the way back someone on a Sloper started to panic as he roared past the 1905 Peugeot, but with some ominous clattering, scraping sounds coming from below. After coming to a rapid halt, the said Sloper rider was relieved to find that it was nothing to do with the engine rebuild (that took two years!) but that the noise was coming from the front stand that had come loose and was scraping on the road. The initial fix was to 'rebolt' it, but this only lasted a kilometer or two, so he repeated the 'rebolt' and tied it up with a piece of rag (he normally carries some wire, but it was in his other jacket). The repair got him back to EPIC without any further mishaps. By all accounts the ride back was very pleasant.
On return to EPIC, the bikes were parked in their respective age categories for judging. This year we were back out in the open area, as last year's effort to park in the shade of Drover's Square proved a bit confusing and disorganised. The judging was again a difficult chore for all of the entrants; the quality and quantity of bikes was outstanding. Indeed, the "Best Club Restoration" trophy was hotly contested with 9 outstanding entries, the most I can recall for many years. The quality was also outstanding. The six Douglas's took pride of place in the front row! After the judging, we lined up for some sandwiches, courtesy of 'Golden Roast, Coast to Coast', a new caterer. This was followed by some of Lyn Scott's famous scones and the Motorkhana events.
Mike Gilmour and Steve Keough did the Motorkhana honours this year, as Rob Harris was 'off with the Indians' in Albury. The first event was the slalom. Mike Gilmour was keen to defend the title he has won for the last two years, initially on a little 2 stroke 350, and last year on a Harley Superglide! This year he checked the rules and found that he could borrow another entered bike. So he went for broke on the John S's 250 Bulty and blitzed the field. Well done Mike. Watch out next year; Howard K might bring back his Jawa speedsters for the challenge.
The second event was the Slow ride. Again, it was hotly contested. Ian Richardson enquired again on whether he could ride in circles on his veteran bike, but was again denied. Well done to Anthony Meany on the WLA!
The final event was the Judgement ride, where you have to judge the width of your handlebars and ride through the sticks without touching them. Here the clear winner was Mac West on his BMW. Thanks to Mike and Steve for running the event this year.
The rest of Saturday afternoon was spent by exchanging bike stories and preparing for the Presentation Dinner. By about 6:30pm the Quokka Pavilion was starting to fill with eager punters ready for a good night's entertainment. The MC for the evening was again that good-looking bloke that 'mans the loudhailer'. Raffle tickets sold at a great pace, touted by Dick and Ursula Holland. The Raffle prizes were plentiful and high quality. The 'Coast to Coast the Golden Roast' Spit Roast dinner was a treat. The Raffle was drawn with many happy winners.
The formal Trophy Presentation followed the Raffle draw. There were many worthy winners indeed. A complete list is at the end of this report. Well done to all of the winners. A special mention is due for our King of the Rally, or more precisely 'The Royal Family of the Rally'. This went to the Gullick family in their 1914 Douglas outfit. When I roared past them on the ride to Gundaroo, young Euan was fast asleep on mum's (Joanne's) shoulder in the wicker basket, with the Dougie just plodding 'onward and upward'. It was a great sight. Euan is obviously being 'blooded' for a future in the historic motorbiking fraternity. On a broader note, we continue to attract some great bikes and riders to our rally. The evening wound down at about 10pm; a great night was had by all.
Sunday's ride was to Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve, via Sutton Road, Monaro Highway and the Uriarra Crossing, for morning tea. We headed off at about 9:15am. I swapped my BSAs for my '75 Caprice (I again took the loudhailer) and had a great drive to Tidbinbilla. On arrival the Toets (with a few helpers) had everything in readiness. The local Park Rangers had also set up road signs for us, aiming the weary riders into the first picnic ground. Rhonda from 'Chameleon Ice cream' had also set up her Ice cream van ready for the onslaught. The venue was great; the cakes, sandwiches, slices, drinks and ice creams were superb. It was a great morning tea; we will definitely use the venue again. Well done to the Toets and support crew.
After about 45 minutes, I grabbed the loudhailer and called everyone to attention for the riders brief. The ride was to be back to EPIC via Paddys River Road, Coppins Crossing, William Hovell Drive, Kingsford Smith Drive and the Barton Highway. Off we went. I was bringing up the rear in the Caprice, with Rex Beard's backup trailer behind when we arrived at the Coppins Crossing turn to find several bikes coming from the wrong direction (i.e. from Uriarra) with a puzzled Peter Dunster and Tailend Charlie looking bemused. Apparently, some riders had missed the part of the brief where I said we are 'not' doing the Uriarra loop. Col H had noticed some riders heading up the Uriarra Loop without marshals and decided that there must have been a marshalling mishap, so he stopped and directed all the following riders up the loop. Never mind, most were blissfully unaware of the marshalling mishap and everyone had a great ride. We didn't lose anyone and no one got hurt!
On return to EPIC, most people put their bikes to bed on trailers and started packing up for the journey home. A few stalwarts from our club took a few hours to do the after-rally cleanup. Many thanks to the clean-up crew: Peter and Ann Toet, John Broad, Col Hill, Stew Ross, Steve Butcher (my apologies for anyone I missed. I've got a good memory, but it is short!). By about 4:00pm we had done the job and headed for home. We had run another great Rally, seen some familiar return Rallyists and made some new friends.
For the record we had 151 machines entered from 157 entrants requiring 132 Saturday lunches, 170 Presentation Dinners and 114 Sunday lunches. There were 6 Douglas's, 21 Triumphs, 19 BSAs, 12 Nortons, 10 Hondas, 10 Harley Davidsons, 9 BMWs, 7 Ariels, 6 AJSs, 6 Yamahas, 5 Velocettes, 5 Ducatis, 5 Matchlesses, 5 Suzukis, 4 Indians, 3 Rudges and sundry others.
Many thanks also to our Grand Marshal, Dick and all of his Marshals, Bill Tarplee, Jim Clough, Russell Beckett, Peter Toet and Rex Beard in the back-up vehicles, Kath and Karin (and helpers) in the Orana Bar, Steve Butcher for all of the Computer/mailout/registration/paperwork/etc support, Col Hill for all of the treasurer things he does (and for arranging the Action Motorcycle display bikes, and for providing the compressor), Peter Toet and John Broad for lugging all of our kit in their trucks, and anyone else that helped that I have left out. I have included a list of helpers below and I hope that I have included everyone. My sincere thanks to one and all. I am the front man that everyone sees, but the Rally would not happen without the support by all of the willing helpers.
Many thanks also to our Rally sponsors and prize donors, as listed at the end of the report. Without their support it would make the Rally very costly and difficult to run. A special thanks to our Major Sponsors, Action Motorcycles, Grand-Prix Carting (Jeff Devine) and Shannons.
We hope to see you next year for our 31st Rally. In the meantime, Safe Riding,
Bill Lewis, On behalf of the Rally Committee
30th Annual Australia Day Rally 2007 -
|Best Veteran (to end 1918)|
|Best Vintage (1919 to 1930)|
|2nd||IAN||HAND||1927||HARLEY DAVIDSON||J MODEL|
|Best Pre-War Classic (1931 to 1945)|
|Best Post-War Classic I (1946 to 1959)|
|3rd||FLOYD||PRIMMER||1952||MOTO GUZZI||FALCONE SPORT|
|Best Post-War Classic II (1960 to 1976)|
|Best Modern (1977 onwards)|
|3rd||GRAEME||GULLICK||1914||DOUGLAS||3 1/2 HP|
|JOHN||DUCAT||1951||BSA Gold Flash||A10 outfit|
|Best European Machine|
|Best Lady Participant|
|Best Junior Participant|
|DAVID||NIELSEN||pillioning on his dad's 2006 Triumph Rocket 3|
|Hardluck Award (Light up with Lucas!)|
|Peter Barges Memorial Shield for Best New Restoration|
|Myles Gilmour Memorial Trophy for the Best Triumph Twin|
|2nd||GRAEME||GULLICK||1914||DOUGLAS outfit||3 1/2 HP|
|3rd||MARK||BOLLER||1934||DOUGLAS||Z1 POWER FLOW|
|King of the Rally|
|GRAEME, JOANNE & EUAN||GULLICK||1914||DOUGLAS outfit||3 1/2 HP|
|Bill Lewis||Co-ordinator, MC, Organiser for: Port, Mugs, Badges, Trophies, Catering, Barlens Hire, EPIC, Liquor Licence, etc, etc, etc|
|Col Hill||Treasurer, funds, floats, cheques, registration, ice, drinks manager, Action Motorcycles co-ordinator, backup trailer provider, fuel, compressor, back-up trailer drinks, etc, etc, etc|
|Steve Butcher||Rally database, printing, mailout, packing night, registration desk, etc, etc, etc|
|Peter & Ann Toet||Property (bbqs, fridges, coffee, tea, urns, utensils, signs, etc), truck deliveries, cleanup, Sunday morning tea, backup trailer backup, etc, etc, etc|
|John Broad||Property (everything), ute delivery, setup and cleanup, Orana Bar support, etc, etc, etc|
|Dick Holland||Grand Marshal, marshal coordination, runs coordination, backup trailer coord, Raffle Ticket sales (with Ursula), etc, etc, etc|
|Lyn Meredith||Registration desk|
|Marty van Sebille||Quokka Fridge, tailend Charlie|
|Mike Gilmour||Motorkhana events|
|Steve Keough||Motorkhana events, photography, web site|
|Bill Tarplee||Backup trailer|
|Jim Clough||Backup trailer|
|Russell Beckett||Backup trailer|
|Rex Beard||Backup trailer|
|Geoff Duddy||Orana Bar support, Master key management, Port consumption|
|Karin Hill||Orana Bar support|
|Ilona White||Orana Bar support|
|Lyn Nicholas||Orana Bar, Sunday Morning Tea|
|Lyn Scott||Saturday afternoon tea|
|Kath Richards||Sunday morning tea, Orana Bar support|
|Sunday Cleanup||Stew Ross, Toets, Col Hill, John Broad, Bob Courtney, Steve Butcher|
|John Sever||Beer purchase|
|Rob Harris||Douglas trophy fabrication|
TROPHY SPONSORS and DONATIONS
|Major Sponsors:||Action Motorcycles|
|Grand Prix Karting|
|King of the Rally:||Action Motorcycles|
|Best Modern Machine:||Action Motorcycles|
|Best Junior Participant:||Harry Julian|
|Best Lady Participant:||Harry Julian|
|Best AJS/Matchless:||Grand-Prix Karting|
|Best BSA:||Grand-Prix Karting|
|Best European:||Gecko Motorcycles|
|Best Harley Davidson:||Robbos Motorcycles|
|Best Indian:||Jim Parker Motorcycles|
|Best Norton:||Grand-Prix Karting|
|Best Post-War Classic II:||Gecko Motorcycles|
|Best Triumph:||Eurotune Motorcycles|
|Best Outfit:||TJ's Tyres & Accessories|
|Best Military:||TJ's Tyres & Accessories|
|Action Motorcycles:||Tiedowns, disc lock, gloves, back pack|
|Canberra M/C Centre:||$100 Gift Voucher|
|Dahlitz Motorcycles:||Motorbike Cover|
|Joes Motorcycles:||Rivet Jacket|
|Loctite Pty Ltd||Loctite Minikits, Shirt, Rainjacket|
|TJ's Tyres & Access.||Cleaning Products, Oils, fuel additives|
|The Battery Factory:||6V & 9V Battery Minders|