Share The Good Times
In 1982 a couple of blokes were sitting at a pub in Toowong downing an ale or three while admiring their bikes.
One turns to the other and says. “We orta start a motorbike club”.
A short time later, they placed and ad in a Brisbane newspaper inviting expressions of interest on said club.
Those that responded were invited on a ride through the Gold Coast Hinterland, with the obligatory stop at a pub… where amongst other things, fine ale was consumed.
By the end of the days ride, the Laverda Club of Queensland (LCQ) was born.
Now, don’t let the name of the club fool you.
Just because it takes it’s name from one of the great Italian motorcycle marques of last century, Laverda, doesn’t mean its exclusive to that brand, they welcome any make of motorcycle to their ranks.
The aim of the club, of course, is to promote the Laverda marque, but you don’t have to own a Laverda to be a member.
Around this time, the Ducati Club of Queensland hosted a Concours de’ Elegance. It was held at the foot of Mount Coot-tha* each year, about 13km (8 miles) west of the Brisbane CBD.
At some point the concours was moved to Captain Burke Park on the bank of the Brisbane River, under the Story Bridge, about 4km (2 miles) south of the CBD.
After a few years at this venue, it all became to hard for the Ducati Club, and, seeing an opportunity, the Laverda Club of QLD took over the event.
Over the following years the concours went from strength to strength, and as good as the city location was, it became problematic.
The event had out grown the park, parking and traffic management were an issue, and residents were arcing up at all the bikes and noise associated with the event.
It eventually all came to a head and 2010 saw the last concours held at that location.
Happily, in 2011 a new venue was found on Brisbane’s Bayside, 28 km (18 miles) east of the Brisbane CBD.
Cleveland Showgrounds provides large expanses of open area for vendors and display bikes, good public amenities and off street parking for visitors bikes. (Cars are relegated to street parking, as it should be 😉 )
With 50 trophies on offer and $2000 for best in show, this year, 2016, saw the Laverda Club of Queensland host concours for its 28th consecutive year.
With each passing year the event grows, attracting more displays and more people through the gate, each coming to see the 200 or more motorcycles on display.
There are categories for almost every age and type of motorcycle, scooter and trike. Competition classes include:
- British post 1985
- British pre 1985
- Continental up to 750cc
- Continental over 750cc
- Japanese post 1985
- Japanese pre 1985
- American pre Evo
- American post Evo
- Best custom
- Judges award for engineering excellence
- Best Laverda
- Rad memorial award for hardest ridden bike
- Classic (pre 1945)
- Dyno top horsepower up to 750cc
- Dyno top horsepower over 750cc
- Dyno top horsepower V-Twin
- Street special (performance modified street bikes)
- Peoples choice award
- Best café racer
- Best competition bike
- Best club display
- Best paint
- Best outfit or trailer
- Best british
- Best Japanese
- Best BMW
- Best Ducati
- Best Moto Guzzi
- Best American
- Best in show ($2,000 prize)
…And concours is not “just another bike show”.
It’s very much geared towards families, and as such, is alcohol and attitude free.
This is probably why its grown to become the only event of its kind on the east coast of Australia, engaging exhibitors and motorcycle enthusiasts alike.
In keeping with the family theme, monies raised from the event go towards the clubs nominated charity: The Make A Wish Foundation.
To the clubs credit, in 2015, the club donated $10,000 to their chosen charity.
In fact over the past 11 years, a total of $65,000 has been donated by the club to this worthy cause.
They are without doubt a club that honours their goal and motto: “Share the good times”.
I’ve been to all 5 concours held at the Cleveland Showgrounds, and I gotta say I’m already looking forward to next years event.
In the mean time, I’ll leave you with some happy snaps (below) from this years Concours de’ Elegance.
BTW … Is it just me, or do you find it a bit strange that they have a French name for a bike show hosed by a motorcycle club that caters to Italian bikes?
- Mount Coot-tha is aboriginal for “Place of honey”.
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