12 - 14 March 2010

This is a Rally for Triumph & BSA 750cc triples made from 1968 to 1976, so if you have a Hinkley triple, or even a Japanese triple don't bother coming!

Twenty-seven of these exciting classics arrived for the 2010 Rally, held this year at Carotel in Canberra. The Triples-Down-Under rallies are the brainchild of Steve Robins, from Queensland & he has built a keen following these last few years. A significant contingent had ridden to the Rally from Robins' home state of Queensland, an epic ride on machines approaching their 40th birthday. These stalwart fellows deserve all praise.

Local organisation in Canberra was provided by members of the Triumph Register, coordinated by Greg Carmody (T160) & Andrew Haddock (T160), both also VVC members. Backup vehicle support & BBQ trailer was provided by our own Club VVCMCC-ACT, with special thanks to out Treasurer Col Hill who put in a great effort. Col also got to ride his 1961 Bonneville on the Saturday.

The Friday ride was just shy of 200 miles & was ridden in bright but overcast weather, just nudging 20°C. The British machines just loved this weather & ran perfectly. Indeed none of the triples experienced any technical problems the whole weekend. The ride took us to the towns of Gunning, Crookwell, Boorowa & Binalong, returning via Yass. This is glorious riding over sweeping countryside on almost deserted roads, ideal for these high performance machines. Riding is rarely this good.

Saturday was a shorter ride of a 140 miles into the Brindabella Ranges, concluding at Honeysuckle Creek, the site of the Apollo Tracking Station, which received Neil Armstrong's famous words from the moon, & a spot frequently visited by our VVC.
Here drama unfolded: Stephen Kelly (Mr. Tri-Spark) lost control of his T160 on the steep descent, with his wife Joanne riding pillion, crashed the bike & ended up in Canberra hospital with serious injuries. Joanne thankfully escaped with concussion & is now fine.

Trevor Fowler, a long time VVC-ACT member & a marshal on this rally had crashed his '66 Thunderbird in almost identical circumstances on this mountain descent eight years before, which had prompted Greg Carmody to warn the riders before they descended. Some of you may remember Trevor's crash. It remains the worse incident in the Club's history.

The Rally dinner was held at a local golf club where the following awards were presented:

Best Drum Brake T150 Trident: Jack Bachop: for a newly restored 1972 T150
Best Disc Brake T150 Trident: *Tony Merz, for his newly restored 1974 T150V
Best T160 Trident: *Greg Carmody: also a newly restored 1976 model.
Best BSA Rocket Three: Tony Hicks for his 1969 model.
Best X75 Triumph Hurricane: Ian Makey
People's Choice Machine: Mike Read for his customised 1969 T150.

* Two of these awards went to VVC members

This was a most successful & highly enjoyable rally: so if you own of these machines I can recommend you look out for Triples Down Under 2011, to be held in the Gold Coast hinterland.

Lorraine Litster:
Riding a 1974 T150V Trident


Some PHOTOS can be seen HERE