September brought us some fantastic events and also 15 new members. Welcome to you all and thank you for joining the Ultimate Driving Club.
We started the month with what I thought would be our regular members meeting at Shannons, just a casual night to catch up with our friends and go over the upcoming events, but on arriving I found out this was far from a normal meeting! With over 70 members and guest speakers Jim and Steve Richards waiting inside to surprise me on my birthday. What a shock, I absolutely had no idea! Jo and everyone there did an amazing job of keeping this big secret until the end. I was welcomed with a chorus of Happy Birthdays and then pizza and cake which was very overwhelming.
After all the frivolity, we all preceded to the conference room and were delighted with Jim and Steve Richards just chatting about their respective careers in motorsport. I can say I was dumbfounded and very humbled by all the effort that had gone into this night and it was not just me who enjoyed it, as all who attended had a great night. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart, what a way to spend my birthday, with so many of our wonderful friends!
We followed with another great turn out at Round 6 of our Traction Tyres/Yokohama Drivers Championship at Sandown, and what a brilliant day that was with DCM Members filling a 1/3 of the field! We started with a dry track in the morning then the rain coming in later in the afternoon, which really made driving conditions challenging. But again, all walked away with massive smile on their faces and full tummies thanks to Jo and Phil Kolar, who always look after our guys with plenty of food, tea, coffee and snacks all day.
What can I say about our Coffee & Cars morning? The weather was looking a little temperamental, with clouds rolling by, but just after 8.30am cars of all marques just kept coming in and filling up the car park. I was overwhelmed at the support for this event. I would have to say we had over 100 cars on the day and the café staff were run off their feet, with members enjoying coffee and brunch inside, out of the cooler wind. It was awesome to see so many different cars and groups coming from all over to drop in, have a chat and look at the cars. Just what a Cars & Coffee meet should be!
Our last event for September was our social drive and go karting event, out at Stony Creek Go Karts and this was again brilliant. Those who were joining us on the drive met at Caldermeade BP and McDonalds for an early breakfast and then once we were all there, we set off on one of the most picturesque drives we have done for a while. The rolling hills through the Gurdies and Gippsland were just stunning, and the driving roads were amazing too, another great drive planned by our Drive Co-ordinator, Peter Williams, thank you Peter, you have excelled yet again.
Once we arrived at the go karting track, those that were driving signed in ready to have some amazing fun out on the track. We were split into two groups and went out in two different sessions. This was one of the most fun things we have all done, as the slightly heavier members struggled in these karts but once we got them going boy we had a ball.
Like a lot of people, both Jo and I are members of several clubs, not just BMWDCM and during the week, Jo got an email from VFT (Victorian Flag Marshalling Team) asking for help at the VMCI State Race Meeting at Phillip Island. We were intending to have a weekend off, but Jo said she would like to help out, so she replied OK, she would flag for them. Then on Thursday night we attended the VMCI (Vic Mini Club) meeting and Michael Holloway (President of VMCI) asked for more members to volunteer as officials over the weekend, due to the Grand Final and it falling over a long weekend and school holidays, they were also short of volunteers for the Saturday and Sunday to actually run the race meeting.
Jo quickly got on her phone during the meeting and sent out texts and emails asking all our officials and volunteers if they could help out over the weekend. Before the night was over, she had 6 respond with a yes and then managed to get close to 20 of our awesome DCM members commit to help over the Saturday and Sunday. Michael was very impressed and extremely happy.
We had members out on flag points, in pit lane and the paddock marshalling, helping as grid marshals and I got to control the event as the official starter. It was a very different view of the race meeting from up in the starter’s box for each race start, counting the laps and then waving the checkered flag for the end of every race.
What a great weekend! Both Jo and I were very proud of the great work all our members did to help out over the weekend. Thank you all who came and helped, you know who you are.
For anyone else who wants to get up close to motorsport, volunteering at these events can be very rewarding and you get to see all the action from up close. To become a CAMS General Official click here to find out more. You'll also need a Working With Children’s Check, which you can get here. Once you've done that, you will be ready to assist at any of our events and even some of the more prestigious events like the Super Cars and even Formula 1 if you want to.
We have a lot of events coming up to look out for:
There are lots more events coming up, make sure you check in on the events page on the website to see all the great events coming up for the end of 2019 and the start of 2020.
Any questions or want to get involved in motorsport drop me a line or drop in for a chat, our door is always open.Drive safe, as always and see you at an event soon.
Graeme Bell | President
BMW Drivers Club Melbourne Inc.
P.O. Box 81, TYABB, VICTORIA. 3913
Incorporated in Victoria #A0102695G
BMW Drivers Club Melbourne Inc is a member of:BMW Clubs Australia and the BMW Clubs International Council
CAMS Affiliated Motorsport Club