We had some showers of rain and the forecast for today and tomorrow morning is for showers. The weather appeared to be clearing towards the afternoon and as the riders from Bunbury started arriving about 3 pm the sun was peeping through the clouds. We had a bigger group, that choose to ride over from Bunbury this year and some that had arrived earlier in the week.
Ken and Maureen Hopkins made a holiday of it and arrived the Wednesday and stayed on after. Maureen told me that they had booked to go to Bali two weeks after the bombing and were fortunate enough to get their money back, so decided to have their holiday in Albany.
Some of us were on the street around 5 am. It was windy and the clouds were fairly racing across the sky - we were setting up between showers. The members of the Pocket Rocket group helped with the laying out of their course.
The motorcycles started arriving from about 8 am. Neil's Morgan cyclecar drew a lot of attention. We were blessed with another couple of showers throughout the morning. By about 11 am the rain had cleared and the sun was shining.
There were about 300-400 motorcycles on display. The two motorcycle shop displays were fantastic. The Pocket Rockets drew a lot of interest and were a little handicapped at the beginning with the rain, and had to wait for the course to dry.
The Street Machines set up on the lawn opposite Supa Valu and were happy with the interest shown in their display. The Club would like to thank Greg Marchesi for his help in the setting up and dismantling of the motorcycle show, and the use of the Classic Car equipment. Winner of the $1000 cash give-away was Amanda Franks, a local girl who works at one of the local petrol stations.
We had record numbers this year. Anna Loot and her daughter Karen did the catering for the BBQ. They put on a great spread, and Karen and her husband cooked the barbecue meat. Everyone seemed to have had a good time. Hope to have them onboard again next year.
The biggest ever, 150 riders started the Poker Run. There were 120 officially entered in the long course and 30 entered in the short course. The Run started from Stirling Terrace and went out along Brunswick Road. Riders enjoyed a ride around the Porongorup area and stopped at Towerhill Wine Estate for afternoon tea.
I heard that there was a small pocket of people that received a downpour from above while checking in, otherwise it was a dry run. Back-up and people manning the checkpoints had their work cut out for them and did a marvellous job. Thank you. A big thank you also to Alan and Diane Williams and crew for a superb afternoon tea.
This year's T-shirt was well received although we still have a number left. If you haven't finished your Christmas shopping perhaps there is someone on your list that would like a special T-shirt for Christmas.
The poster was very popular. Available for sale at Albany Visitors Centre, Albany Motorcycles, Great Southern Motorcycles and Dylans on the Terrace. The cost of the posters is $5 each. We have a totally different design this year and it is truly striking.
Our very own Club President designed this year's badge and it's a very attractive looking badge and very reasonably priced at $6. Our bumper sticker is a larger copy of the badge in a striking black and gold on white and are available for $1 each.
As the closing date was October 7, we had 100 bikes entered this year, many of which were riding for the very first time. Two riders and a passenger travelled from Victoria. We had some very rare bikes like the 1953 Gilera Saturno, and a 1970 Cheney Triumph to name just two.
We had two groups of 32 and one group of 38 riders for the day. A brand new recording team and a timing team in training. The new pit crew was Starter, Andy Roberts; Grid Marshall, Gary Dibble and Pit Marshall, Ken McWhirter. All handled the pace very well.
The setting-up on the hill was a little late getting under way. We had perfect weather and a perfect day, just a little short on time. But this has proved a couple of things to us: Firstly - We can't take more than 100 riders. Secondly - We need to extend the road closure, time suggested was from 6 am to 6 pm to allow for run off and clean up time.
POKER RUN: Anne Stonehouse - straight 3,4,5,6,7.
HARD LUCK: Glen Tysoe - Had just finished a long restoration and the first big ride had a puncture and he was unable to finish.
HILL CLIMB: Largest program ever with 100 riders entered by October 7. Through circumstances out of our control we had three cancellations and started the day with 97 riders. At the end of the day we were left with 10 riders that had nominated their times and then run three runs with a perfect score. So the winner had to be determined by run-offs to the hundreth of a second.
OUTRIGHT WINNER: Tony Hynes on a 1969 Yamaha 350cc. Tony nominated a time of 37 seconds and in the run-off turned in a time of 37.07 sec (loss of .07 sec).
SECOND PLACE: Stan Read on a 1955 BSA 500cc. Stan had a nominated time of 43 sec and turned in a time of 42.81