Sunday, August 19, 2012

A day at Historic ROB ROY HILLCLIMB

Sunday was a vintage sports car meeting held at Rob Roy Hillclimb - now you might ask, "What is a Rob Roy?" I can answer that because I was invited to put my book, "Rob Roy Hillclimb - The Hill, the Drivers, the Cars" on display and hopefully make a few sales. When we initially released the book, the profits paid for our first air fares to France - a country we gained a passion for.

Back in 1992, our car club, the MG Car Club had the opportunity to resurrect a very famous part of Australian Motor Sport history. The Light Car Club of Australia established Rob Roy Hillclimb back in 1937 with its demise in 1961. It took 30 odd years before it was restored to its former glory with its reopening in February 1993 with the "Return to Rob Roy" meeting. Many of the surviving drivers from the past era were invited to help celebrate those nostalgic days.

No matter what the conditions, Melbourne people always come out for a Rob Roy Hillclimb Meeting.

To help with the costs of restoring the venue, we formed a revenue raising program which our little group within the MG Car Club named, Friends of Rob Roy. We signed up 500 members within a period of 8 months. In that time I met with many of these old Snoozers who had raced at Rob Roy. I listened to their tales, they offered photos and cuttings and as the collection of material grew it morphed into a book. I guess that's a long story to tell as to why I was there.

The Competitors

I was quite chuffed to have been invited and we sold quite a few books on the day but just as enjoyable was to meet up with many old friends - several drivers still alive who feature in the book and to meet some new people who had fathers and uncles that competed there in the past.

The Cars

Then again there were some not so perfect cars but I'm sure that their owners loved them just as much.

Rob Roy Hillclimb in the northern hill country of outer Melbourne sits in amongst some of the most picturesque terrain. I remember when I was more involved with the running of events at the hill, we would have to shoo the kangaroos off the property before the drivers arrived to prepare their cars for the day's meeting. Occasionally there would be a wedge tail eagle floating on the thermals - God's Own Country!!! For sure.

Then there were the little boys toys.

As the day progressed and old friends were met, greeted and wished good wishes for the future, we started packing up with a successful day's sales of the book. The rains the day before may have made Rob Roy Hillclimb look like a cow paddock but I can tell you that it did not dampen the spirits of the vintage car enthusiasts of Melbourne.


  1. We would loved to have been with you. We both always loved hill climbs in good old S.A. especially in the 356. Take care Nigel & Diane

    1. Diane - there's another Rob Roy Hillclimb event in November - why not hop on a plane and pop over for the weekend?
      If there's any 356s competing, I'll be sure to have a pic for you.

    2. We wish it was that easy to pop over for the weekend, we would both love it :-) D & N

  2. Replies
    1. LLM - yes and the whole day was a hoot. Some very colorful characters as well. Been reading your blog, you have soooo many commenters.

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. Just watched a short video on the "drive" website about the 75th anniversary, thought I might see you there...


Love to get feedback so no reason to be shy - have your say.