May crept up on us with a bang, starting with our Third Birthday and Presentation Night and idrive launch at the Park Hyatt Melbourne and kicked off another very busy month.
It was an amazing night, with so may members attending and dressing up in their finery. It was fantastic to see so many of you there, helping celebrate another year in the life of our wonderful club. We had two members join us from BMW Drivers Club NSW and of course our fantastic guest speaker Jacqui Cooper. Everyone left with a fresh new issue of our third edition of idrive, and boy it is another great addition to our collection. You should all have received your copy in the mail by now too and I hope you enjoy it. Thank you also to those of our sponsors who attended, it was great to see you out having so much fun.
On 8 May we had Round 4 of our Traction Tyres/Yokohama Drivers Championship at Sandown with AROCA. It was great to see so many attending this and the Championship ladder is looking great so far. It was a beautiful sunny day, and everyone enjoyed the day out on track.
On 11 May a large group of us attended our May meeting a Creative Custom Cars where Alan How showed us around his elaborate workshop and explained with great passion what they do there and how they restore the vehicles currently in their workshop.
On 14-16 May, we headed down to Philip Island where quite a few of our members were amongst the growing E30 Racing grid. 16 E30s were gridded up over the weekend for some sometimes slippery racing, with only a few small incidents happening and only one DNF (me) due to a broken rocker that we couldn’t fix between race two and three. It was great to see the club members coming to support the racing and joining us in the pits for a chat and taking part in the Motoring Heritage Day at the same time.
On 16 May Lawrence and Shaaron led a drive all the way from Geelong down to Phillip Island for National Motoring Heritage Day, which was brilliant,and despite the arctic weather we had a great turnout and then they all displayed across from turn 12 to watch both the E30 races for the day. It was so great to have the support of the members, we will definitely do this again as both competitors and spectators enjoyed the day.
16 May was a busy day for some of us. Not only did we have Racing and the Motoring Heritage Day Drive and show, I also attended the 2021 BMW Clubs Australia AGM with Lawrence as an invited observer. This year the Clubs Australia AGM has been split into two parts. The first part was via Zoom, on 16 May, largely to get the government requirements out of the way for the year, have elections of the executive and also to make a few announcements to delegates and keep us informed about goings on Nationally and Internationally in the BMW Club World.
One of these announcements was the 2021 BMW Clubs Australia Award of Excellence. Each year the executive of Clubs Australia call for nominations for this prestigious award and last year I put together a nomination for one of our members. Someone that works tirelessly for all of us, is the backbone of the club and spends her days doing everything she can to make the Club such a wonderful place for all of us. The 2021 winner of the BMW Award of Excellence is none other than our very own Jo Mawson. She was very surprised that not only could I nominate her without her knowing, but also receive the trophies and get them down to Phillip Island, so I could award it to her during the Zoom meeting. Quite amazingly, for once, Jo was speechless! Jo is a very deserving recipient of the Award and deserves to be acknowledged for everything she does for us and the club.
On 23 May a group of us attended Rob Roy Hillclimb for Round 5 of our Traction Tyres/Yokohama Drivers Championship and Round 2 of the Motorsport Australia Interclub Challenge and boy what a beautiful day this turned out to be. Freezing on the drive up with my frost warning coming on as I dipped into the valleys, but the day turned out to be tremendous with again several of our members attending to support those who competed. I even walked away with a couple of trophies on the day, although one was for the last Hillclimb there.
We were supposed to finish the month with a coffee & cars day in Beaumaris but unfortunately, we have been placed into lockdown version 4 for 7 days and this has been postponed. It was due to be a great day with over 60 registered and we were going to be supporting one of our club members Christopher George who is the owner of Flavours Patisserie. Chris owns three patisseries, Black Rock Beaumaris, and Parkdale. If you are in the area, be sure to pop in and let him know you are a club member, grab a takeaway coffee and pastry and we will run the event as soon as we can get back out again. Hopefully lockdown V4 won’t go longer than 7 days and we can get back to ‘normal’ again soon.
Now we are back in lockdown again, we are not sure what will be happening in June, it will depend on what restrictions remain after this week, but all going well we will be joining Makulu Storage Facility for our June members meeting on 8 June and we will be joined by the boys from Century Batteries for a quick chat and they will also be supplying some great door prizes.
12 - 14 June is our Queen’s Birthday long weekend Whale Watching Weekend. There are still spots available for this weekend, if you are wanting to attend you will need to make sure you can get accommodation, as I know rooms were selling very quickly. We're looking forward to getting out in the countryside again, our last few trips away with the Club were awesome. With great driving roads and a fantastic bunch of friends enjoying our time together.
19 June will be our first Come & Try/Driver Training Day for 2021. Run by BMWDCM at Sandown, this is a great event to get out and learn some track techniques, get someone in the car with you for some instruction, no matter what level, or just give your car a decent squirt, without the law sending you a pretty picture for your trouble. If in fact you are thinking about whether or not you should enter, just remember, it is the only safe place to put your foot down and you can do it all day for less than the cost of one little slip up on the road!
27 June will be our June drive heading from Mornington BMW down to Point Nepean, where you will be able to wonder around and take in some of the historic buildings and then lunch is at the Pig and Whistle at 2pm.
Further on in the calendar we have Christmas in July on 24 July and this is always a fun event, with members dressing up in festive costumes and as usual there will be great prizes to giveaway for the best Christmas costumes.
Our Major trip away this year is our drive Tour of Tasmania and so far, we have had a great response. Get your registrations in early and if you are wanting to make progress payments, we have that option too. We really love getting down to Tassie and enjoying the roads and scenery and with a great bunch of people with us, it will be epic. Don’t miss out on it!
Hopefully, this lockdown is only 7 days so please don’t despair, we will be back out doing what we love again soon and remember we are only a phone call away and if you do know someone who you think may have problems being isolated, give them a call, they would really appreciate that.
In this light, we have decided to appoint a new position or role within the club.
Firstly, we have decided we should have a Welfare Officer or Team, whose role is to make sure everything we do as a club is for the good of all involved, and everyone in our club, whether at events or out in the community, is looked after emotionally at all times. If you are concerned about anything we do or anything we don’t do, please let me know. Once we appoint someone to the role, we will let you know who it will be. Similarly, if you think you would like to be considered for the role also let me know.
The second reason we think it is a good idea is, whilst we don’t and aren’t a religious group and we don’t wish to become one or to push any particular religion or faith over any other, sometimes it is nice to have someone to talk to, to offer guidance or even meaning at times of hardness or even to give thanks to what ever you believe in and if we have someone in that role, we can call on them for help when needed. Personally, I am not religious, but I have had occasion in life to turn to someone for answers or strength and it has been a Chaplain that has been there to listen and offer words of wisdom that kept me going or reassured me everything will be ok. I’d like to know what you think too, let me know what you think of this, we are a growing community and for a lot of us our club is more than just a club, it is a family, and a family offers support to its members, both physically and emotionally.
Our first thought was to appoint a single person, but we feel this would be better served by a small group of people that can listen to you, help you or support you if you need it. This Welfare Team will be made up of both women and men and be available anytime you need support. Again, if you would like to be included or indeed need some help or support, please let me or one of us know. Only too happy to chat to anyone about anything. I have set up an email address email@example.com, use it if you need it. Of course, anything you discuss with anyone on our welfare team will be treated with the utmost confidentiality and respect.
Speaking of memberships and our growing family, we have this week reached yet another milestone. We currently have 600 members! Totally amazing! I am lost for words every time I think about how this club has grown and how fantastic it is to have so many like-minded friends joining us on our journey and enjoying the Club we have all built together. Thank you all for joining us and welcome to those new members that have joined recently. I know you will enjoy the atmosphere and events we create and the friendships we foster amongst us. We are a family, and we love that you have joined us, so again, welcome.
Again, we will wait for the Government to decide what we are allowed to do, going forward, or when we will get back out, so keep an eye on the emails and facebook for updates as to our future events. At the moment, this weekend is postponed but we will let you know if anything else is affected.
Don’t forget, we have Club logo, triple layer face masks and also neck warmers if you haven’t got one or can’t find what you did with yours. All available in our store, with all the other great Club Merchandise. Our new Club Umbrellas are on the way too, so we will have them in stock soon too. Go and check out what is available here.
Take care everyone, stay safe, stay home, get a vaccination, and we’ll see you out somewhere soon.
Graeme Bell | President
BMW Drivers Club Melbourne Inc.
P.O. Box 81, TYABB VIC 3913
Incorporated in Victoria #A0102695G
BMW Drivers Club Melbourne Inc is a member of: BMW Clubs Australia and the BMW Clubs International Council
Motorsport Australia Affiliated Motorsport Club