The 2023 Kingdom Veteran, Vintage and Classic Car Club committee from left to right: Martina Molyneaux (Webmaster); Joe O’Sullivan (Vice chairman, Chris Foley (Social Media); Willie McElligott (Chairman), Garrett Foley (Secretary); Alan Fitzell (Youth Officer) and Geroge Glover ( Joint Treasurer) [absent from photo joint treasurer Aine Doyle]
Kingdom Veteran Vintage and Veteran Car Club map out the year ahead at Annual General Meeting
The Kingdom, Veteran Vintage and Classic Car Club is preparing for a busy year on the roads of Kerry.
As well as a full programme of Cars n Coffee meet-ups and one-day runs, the biggest historic car club in Kerry will also run three very different but hugely important flagship events.
Details of the club’s programme of events were announced at the club’s Annual General Meeting in Tralee on January 29.
Blennerville-based Willie McElligott was selected as the club’s new chairman, and he replaces Tony Hehir who has been in the hot seat since 2017.
“It is an honour, but I have big boots to fill taking over from Tony,” said the incoming chairman.
“I am looking forward to it, my main interests are cars and people and they go hand in hand in this club.”
Willie McElligott was elected chairman of the Kingdom Veteran, Vintage and Classic Car Club at its Annual General Meeting on Sunday
Francie Cantillon was announced as the club’s president – he has given 44 loyal years of service to the organisation.
The club’s 44th annual Ring of Kerry Run will remember club founder PJ O’Riordan.
The Ardfert man passed away in 2020 during the height of pandemic-related restrictions so the club was unable to honour the contribution PJ made to the classic car movement, not just locally, but nationally too.
The June 9/10 event will be known as the PJ O’Riordan Remembrance Ring of Kerry Run and will start and finish in Kenmare – a new venue for the club’s early summer run but a regular halt in the Autumn Run.
“We as a club will be celebrating PJ’s life, times and cars while recognising the fact that the KVVCCC would not exist today without the huge work that was done by PJ, his wife Noreen and family,” said club secretary Garrett Foley.
“PJ was a founding member, Chairman, and President of the KVVCCC for a period that spanned 41 years. This is our way of remembering such an important person in the vintage scene in Kerry, Ireland and beyond.”
Noreen was made an honorary life member of the club at Sunday’s AGM.
In July, the club in association with the Irish Vintage and Classic Car Club will mark the 120th anniversary of the Ballyfinnane Hillclimb.
The July 1903 event is hugely important to motoring historians and motorsport enthusiasts all over the country and beyond and was the first closed-road motorsport event in Kerry.
On July 15, 1903, Charles Rolls, who later went on to become a founder of the Rolls Royce Motor Company won the County Kerry Cup over a 500-yard course near the mid-Kerry village.
In 1993 the KVVCCC erected a monument to Rolls on the finish line to mark the 90th anniversary of the historic event and since then the location has been a popular stopping-off point for visiting car clubs.
The KVVCCC will run a classic car run over the original course on the morning of July 15. A few hours later members of the Brass Brigade arm of the Irish Vintage and Classic Car Club will follow.
The Brass Brigade hold annual rallies all over Ireland but specifically chose Kerry for this year’s event as club members wanted to mark the 120th anniversary of the famous hillclimb.
Up to forty cars, from the early 1900s to the 1930s are expected in Tralee on the weekend of July 15/16. After visiting the Rolls Monument in Ballyfinnane both clubs will enjoy a tour of West Kerry before a Gala Dinner Celebration in the Ballyroe Hotel.
The KVVCC’s Autumn Run will take place on October 14 and will be once again based in Kenmare and a road-run along the Beara Peninsula is currently in the planning stages.
The 2022 running of the Autumn Run was significant because it was the first time that the Dick Mason Memorial Trophy was presented. The trophy was donated by the Mason family from Tralee in memory of a man who gave a life-long dedication to the club.
It will be awarded annually to the person who has done the most to promote the club over the course of a year and the inaugural recipient was long-serving secretary Garrett Foley.
The full list of club events announced at the AGM is as follows.
Date Event Venue
April 23 Garrett Foley Cars n Coffee TBC
May 14* Johnny Cahillane Run Killorglin –
May 28 Ray Corkery Run TBC
June 9/10 Ring of Kerry Run Kenmare
June 25 Cars in Coffee North Kerry
July 15 Ballyfinnane Hillclimb Ballyfinnane
August 27* Secretary’s Scramble TBC
September 24 Cars N Coffee TBC
October 13/14 Autumn Run Kenmare
October 22 Tony Darmody Run Faha
Both events are to be confirmed and are subject to a date change
The following officers were elected at the AGM and will take charge of the club for the year ahead.
Chairman Wilie McElligott
Vice chairman Joe O’Sullivan
Secretary Garrett Foley
Joint Treasurer Aine Doyle
Joint Treasurer George Glover
Youth Officer Alan Fitzell
PRO Sean Moriarty
Youth Officer Alan Fitzell
Webmaster Martina Molyneaux
Social Media Chris Foley