The Ducati Owners Club of Queensland Inc has a long and illustrious history commencing in 1977. The club meets on the first Wednesday evening of the month and holds a monthly club ride and a social ride/event as well as several weekend runs including rides for bevels and Moto Giro eligible bkes.
It was sometime in July/August 1977 that a small ad appeared in The Courier Mail on a Saturday morning asking anyone interested in forming a Ducati Club to ring a government public service number and ask for Mick or Brian. Overwhelmed with the dozen phone calls from keen Ducati owners, these boys organised a meeting at a council hall in Camp Hill for a cold Wednesday night, which turned out not to be a very good idea as the hall burnt down between when it was booked and when the meeting was supposed to be.
Five people turned up for the meeting which didn't get off to a very glamorous start as no one could recognise the charred remains of a building as our meeting place. A consensus decision saw us roll up to the Camp Hill Hotel where we talked things over over a cold one or three.
Another meeting didn't get organised for a month or so, and then it was at Mark Glynn's house on Rode Road. It was here that such notable members as The Ferret, Peter White, Rick 'Ghost who walks' Walker, and 'Uncle Bob' Pashley made their debut. The first committee was also elected, with Mick Rocket grabbing the position of Pres because it was his idea to place the ad in the paper. Bob Pashley was our first Treasurer (and still is, by the way!!) because he worked at the Post Office and Mark Glynn was Secretary - it was his house. So, after the second meeting, we had our inaugural committee of three with a president no one ever saw again as he joined the Armed forces the following week and moved south of the border to Melbourne.
Next on the excitement agenda was the first club run. The meeting place was the Caltex Servo at Eight Mile Plains. Ten Ducatis went through Springbrook, Numbinbah Valley and on to Kingscliffe. The Ferret introduced everyone to his stunning repertoire of tricks, like big wheelies, riding up beside you and switching your ignition off, riding backwards, side saddle and standing up on the seat. Bob's 750SS lost a few bits and pieces on the way - the rear carbie blew off and bounced along behind him and the battery flew out for some strange reason. But this was all very sedate compared to what Brian Eugarde had in store for everyone as well as for his poor little 250 Desmo. Brian must have been very excited after the swimming and skylarking at Chillingham because he took off like a rocket from the swimming hole and into the hair pin. Someone said, "Gee, he's going to have some fun on that corner", and he sure did - went clean through the barbed wire fence and got airborne off the two meter drop. He was relatively unperturbed, even though he ended up in the camping ground. On viewing the tents and canvas, he is believed to have said, "Funny place to put a camping ground". The only problem was getting his bike through the fence and the weeds and onto the road again.
After the first run, the club advanced fairly quickly, partly because we were all very keen and always trying to get other Dukes riders interested, and partly because it gave us a forum to meet other enthusiasts and learn about their bikes - what made them fun to own and what didn't. Another present member at this time was Tom Williams who was once seen at a bike shop at Underwood. On display was a second-hand Harley 1200, which Tom was pretending he wanted to buy, just so he could get take a test ride. He got a test ride alright, complete with a large bike salesman perched on the "buddy pad". On his return, he had to convince the salesman that he'd have to think about it a bit more... For the first few months of the Club's inception, day runs are the order of the day, with singles and 860's dominating. Many members make the annual pilgrimage to Bathurst and the Six Hour, including Ross and Lindsay porter on their well thrashed singles. Together with the Four Owners Club, the DOCQ is involved in the first blood run which nets our first TV coverage.
1978... Bob Pashley and Peter "Ferret" White make their racing debut under license from other clubs due to the DOCQ not being affiliated with the ACU. DOCQ hold their first gymkhana at Aspley. DOCQ Christmas Party is held at Imbil. Described as "hedonistic", it was enjoyed by all. Throughout 1978, practice days at Lakeside prove popular as well as food nights held at members' houses.
1979... DOCQ holds the first Midnight to Dawn Rally, intended to test the endurance of the hardiest competitor. Bob Pashley and Ray Stewart enter Bob's 750SS in the Eldorado 3 Hour race and score a 5th in the 750 class.
1980... The decade starts with the 10 000 Bike Rally being held in Canberra, supported by a large contingent of DOCQ representatives. DOCQ wins the annual inter club soccer match. Another Midnight to Dawn rally held, which Darryl Schafferius and Paul Beighton win on Darryl's 450 Desmo. Queen's Birthday weekend trip to Gibraltor Range National Park. How bad was the weather? DOCQ becomes affiliated with the ACU. As more members became involved in racing it seems like a logical step.
1981... Jon Oxford persuades the Motorcycle Sportsmen Club to hold races for European bikes only. This is the genesis of the popular Formula European Series in Qld and Interstate. Races are dominated by Peter White, with regular starters like Rick Walker, Mark Glynn and Tom Williams being relied upon. Peter White and Ray Stewart finish 9th in their class in the Coke 800 at Oran Park Ducatis have a 100% finishing record in the race. Concours D'Elegance at JC Slaughter Falls which attracts 62 entrants, mostly from club members. Display held in the Botanical gardens in conjunction with Warana. DOCQ finds a new home at the Speedway Club in Fortitude Valley. This turns out to be unsuccessful and the meetings are moved temporarily to the Queen's Arms Hotel. The DOCQ pitches in to clean up the "Jam Factory" at Bulimba and this becomes the club home for the next seven years. Midnight to Dawn Rally via Beaudesert and Aratula. Dave Ward and Hazel Wright win on a BMW. Due to ACU affiliation, speed can no longer be recorded, so observation skills are relied upon to determine the winners. Another gymkhana is held at Aspley with a loose competition held between DOCQ and a Norm Fraser's team. The Norm Fraser's team of A grade road racers, Pete Byers and Charlie Wilkie take the chequered flag. The Surfers Speed Week meeting sees a great duel between Peter Payne and Gowanloch rider Chris Nankiville in the European race, with Chris winning by two lengths. The year closes with another chaotic, hot Christmas party at Imbil.
1982... The year starts with another Concourse and due to some publicity the numbers of spectators and entrants jumps. The club also obtains a liquor license which probably helps numbers along a bit! Jack Campanella wins Best Ducati in Show with his 450. The club actually makes some money. DOCQ holds a fuel economy run which Mick Lake's 250 MK111 records 96.8 mpg and takes the winning prize. DOCQ holds the shortest club run in history, with members riding down Queen Street just two hours before it was closed to make way for the Mall. 60 riders turn up for the V-Twin rally at Bucca, near Bundaberg. Midnight to dawn Rally continues to grow with 46 entrants setting out over Mt Mee. Ronnie duffell wins after been seen bouncing along in the forestry where no road existed. DOCQ finally enter the 4BC raft race after years of deliberation. We are immediately disqualified for using a motor. DOCQ members make appearances at the Formula European series at Oran Park. Bob Pashley makes a remarkable recovery from an accident at Surfers after being shunted by a Kawasaki. The Kwaka rode up the Duke's back wheel onto the tail pice, leaving tyre marks on Bob's leathers before demolishing itself and boucing out of the circuit into the spectator area in the main straight.
1983... Another Concourse heralds the new year. Over 100 entries and thousands of spectators enjoyed the day, which later appeared on all evening TV news bulletins. A financial success despite running out of supplies. DOCQ dabbles for the first time into ACU events, with a hill climb at Mt Cotton. Alan Jolley makes his competition debut and is also the only casualty. Ken Taylor, another new member, breaks the European record on his standard 500 Pantah. DOCQ enter the 4BC raft race once again, drowning every internal combustion engine coming within 40 feet of us. Midnight to Dawn Rally sees competitors reduced to just 20. This is attributed to the bucketing rain. Ronnie Duffell gets hopelessly bogged up to his axels, Greg Hunter spends the night under a picnic shelter and Russ Victorsen wins on his Darmah. The V-Twin Rally is held at Ralph Crouch's property at Gin-Gin and is generally accepted as the most enjoyable. Bob Pashley and Ray Stewart jet off to compete in Ireland and the Manx GP at the Isle of Man. The racing team have mixed success at home.
1984... This years Concourse proves that it really has outgrown its site at Mt. Cootha. With 130 bikes entered and thousands of spectators, the parking situation alone is chaotic. It is decided that the venue will have to be changed for next year. Ronnie Duffell, ex-Pres and club stalwart, is killed in an accident in a Marzocchi Series around Lakeside. One of the clubs most respected and dedicated members, he will never be forgotten. DOCQ organise the first combined Italian Day Run. This proves very successful. The Midnight to Dawn rally suffers its first postponement when torrential rain threatens to flood the route. The re-run sees a big increase in numbers and takes competitors via Gatton. Daphne Elsey wins on a BMW.
1985... Captain Burke Park at Kangaroo Point is the new site for the Concours D'Elegance. Another increase in spectators confounds our catering estimates. We make a profit despite not having the liquor license. Aussie Trial Champ, Steve Hope gives a great display of Arena Trials. The racing team declines in numbers, but John Goddard and Gaz Miller are seeing some good results. DOCQ organise a weekend run to Fowlers Lane near Byron Bay. Despite the cold weather the pig-on-a-spit is enjoyed by all. Midnight to Dawn rally sees over 100 bikes entered. In cold conditions, the hard luck award goes to a hapless rider who loses his wallet and has to leave his gloves to pay for his fuel. He has to ride the rest of the way without them. Wayne Hunter wins, with Greg Hunter second, both on BMW's. The V-Twin rally at Bucca again, proves to be a flop - not enough publicity, and it seems not enough enthusiasm. A change of name and venue is on the books. The year ends with the Christmas party being held in Byron Bay.
1986... The Concours, held at the Captain Burke Park, proves to be another success. The Midnight to Dawn Rally characterises the year with over 150 competitors on the night ride. Greg Hunter wins at last, with brother Wayne second. DOCQ holds its second hill climb at Mt. Cotton. John Foreman records the fastest of the day with a 47.1 second run. DOCQ wins the interclub sports day with a change of sports to cricket, and some big hitting from Wayne Hunter. The V-Twin Rally is held at Brymaroo on the darling Downs, and is called the "Not the Halley's Comet Rally". This is our answer to the hoards of Comet celebrations. It attracts about 400 riders who are promised free entry to the next Halley's Comet Rally. The local bush fire brigade does the catering, leaving the committee to relax as well. DOCQ members make their way to Oran Park to celebrate the NSW club 10th Anniversary.
1987... This year sees the best Concours yet with nearly every local club represented as well as many local businesses. A swap meet is held in conjunction and will be expanded next year. Thanks to the local motorcycle industry without whose help the Concours would be impossible to stage. John Goddard and Bob Pashley make their way to Daytona for the Battle of the Twins. In the shortened race, John scores a creditable 16th and Bob 24th after starting from the back of the grid. Alan Jolley switches to racing 240 Yamahas, and continues to improve. By popular demand, another rally is held at Brymaroo, this time, "Not the Americas Cup Rally" at which no yachts are allowed. It is decided that next year it will be the "Not the Bicentennial Rally" to be held at the same site. The Hunter brothers continue on their winning way at the Midnight to Dawn Rally where 202 competitors tackle a course mainly around the city. It appears that some residents are not impressed and the decision is made to keep the rallies to the country in the future.