Veterans Tour of Duty Poker Run

Veterans MC Federal Chapter Annual Tour of Duty Poker Run and Rolling Bike Show.

AFTER a bit of rain and cool mornings in the week leading up it was a welcome relief to see clear skies on the day as we all fronted up at the servo at Eaglehawk for coffee, bacon and egg rolls and registration. T-shirt sales were doing a roaring trade. Walking around the carpark I saw plenty of individuals and groups coming together for this fundraiser for local charities. I saw patches for Gods Squad, Free Souls MC Oregon, BACA, and other groups such as C.R.A.B. all using the power of motorcycling to raise awareness.

After first cards drawn and a brief from VMC President Bones and Road Captain (and chief organiser) Spaz, it was stands up at 1000 and down the Federal Highway towards the town of Collector, the Bushranger Hotel and card number 2. It was a great sight with 125 registered players plus a few dozen VMC members making up a pack of around 175 motorcycles.

The tiny town filled quickly and the bloke in his front yard checking out our arrival did not bat an eyelid when we asked if he had the jug on for a brew for all of us. This is where the raffles started with great prizes such as watches from Exquisite Jewellers at Kippax, vouchers from Joe’s Motorcycles, Elite Meats, Braidwood Bakery and others. This is also where we started the judging for the rolling bike show and the Pres said, “Mork, you are picking Best American.” Thanks for that. Tough gig with the biggest category by a country mile.

Stands up and onto stop two, the Terminus Hotel at Marulen, card three and lunch; the $25 rego fee included a sausage sizzle. So far so good with only one bike on the recovery trailer… wait, we can fix that, none on the recovery trailer. It was a relaxing hour or so in Marulen catching up with mates and checking out the bikes. I was down to a possible seven winners in Best American. Great to see some members of other Chapters of the Veterans MC turn up at Marulen for a catch up.

The highway miles were out of the way and the rest of the run was to be on country roads. Next stop the Loaded Dog Hotel in Tarago and card number four. We were looking forward to a few twisties on this leg and it started out pretty well, until a T-junction when a learner got in front of us. I wonder how they felt with 175 bikes right behind them for plenty of kilometres. We patiently sat behind the learner nowhere to overtake for miles, when we finally got past it was only a few kilometres further when we found ourselves behind an old couple in their micro car doing well below the posted limit. Oh well, it was still a nice day for it.

Last leg back to the Eaglehawk Hotel at Sutton where we had started. I was down to three bikes in Best American just wanting to make sure they were in the carpark when we got there.

Not everyone rides in a pack all the time; some people never have. Those of us who do know there are certain rules and protocols for this type of riding and damn good reasons for it. Overall, it was pretty good suffice to say that back at Eaglehawk one person was told they probably should not hang around and left amid much noise and smoke.

Back at the pub, last card drawn, bike show results given to Bones, beer in hand.

Best Hand and $750: Ted Smith.
Worst Hand: Tibbo.
Best American: Ted Smith on a Black and Gold Breakout (beat a Red Breakout and a grey Bagger).
Best Euro British: Marcel
Best Jap: Mick
Best Ladies: Kharan on an Indian Scout.

Thanks to everyone who attended, especially the three on L plates; great to see you there. Money raised will go to St Benedicts at Queanbeyan and the Veterans Liaison Office at Canberra Hospital.

words by Mork VFFV; photos par Excellence by Shea Jost.

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