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.
Willie McElligott was elected chairman of the Kingdom Veteran, Vintage and Classic Car Club at its Annual General Meeting on Sunday
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.”
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.
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]
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
Webmaster Martina Molyneaux
Social Media Chris Foley
The Cork v Kerry rivalry is well know in football terms but that rivalry doesn’t really follow through when it comes to vintage cars, more especially when that car is the Ford Escort MK1 & Mk2. Each year a group of us like minded Escort men meet up and support each others vintage runs and shows. This year that started with the Cork boys making their annual trip to Killarney on May 17th for the start of the 35thRing of Kerry Run. A total of 92 cars set off scenic route which encompasses the Iveragh peninsula with a length of 170 km. As we made our way through Killorglin we headed for our first stop for some quick refreshments in Glenbeigh and onward to Caherciveen for lunch. It is very important to have your car in spotless condition when parked up in Caherciveen as judging for the Best Presented Car on the Run takes placed here, Brendan’s 1600 sport Escort was lucky enough to scoop the prize for him in 2013.
After Caherciveen we took the optional route and headed for the quick crossing to Valentia Island departing by ferry from the ideally located Point Bar. Once on the island we headed for the Slate quarry and Lighthouse, followed by panoramic views of the island and beyond from the top Guekon Mountain. After departing the island at Portmagee we drive up over the mountain along a twisty maze of tarmac road that would bring the rally driver out in any Ford Escort MK1 or Mk2 owner as we headed for the overnight stop in Sneem. On Sunday we depart Sneem for the first stop of the day for tea/coffee in Kenmare, followed by a fantastic spin down the infamous Molls Gap and complete our event on our return to Killarney. A total of €3500 was raised during the event which will provide much needed funds for local Kerry charities.
On August 31st it was time for the Kerry contingent to return the favour to the Cork boys and support their vintage run and static show in aid of Cystic Fibrosis Ireland. Our journey starts quiet early from Tralee where we travel to the start of the run at the ViaDuct Inn on the Bandon road out of Cork City. The pub is a popular place for many of the Ford owners to meet up for various events throughout the year and it doesn’t disappoint again with over 30 cars including Escorts, Anglia’s, Cortina’s and Capri turning up to support this worthy charity. After a good hearty breakfast is onboard we depart the Viaduct for 30km route along the back roads around Cork City and finish at the industrial village of Ringaskiddy for the static show on the grounds of Cork Port. There was already a large amount of fellow vintage owners parked up to greet us when we arrived at the Port with cars ranging from two beautifully restored Ford Model T’s to the modern Ford Focus RS. After a few hours of admiring the cars on show and having the banter with the Cork lads it was time to head for the county bounds and the long journey home, an impressive €3000 was raised for Cystic Fibrosis Ireland. If anyone fancies joining us on our travels next year they are more than welcome.
On Saturday 17th May the Kingdom Veteran Vintage and Classic Car Club set out on its 35th Annual Ring of Kerry Run.
The two day event started in Killarney 70 cars registered before the run by post and on line and another 22 on the day giving us a total of 92 cars on the day.
The 92 entrants were made up of 50 of our own club members of 140, 20 Cork and the remainder Carlow, Dublin, Tipperary, Offaly, Galway, Kildare, Waterford, Limerick and more.
The Ring of Kerry is a road route in the south of Kerry which encompasses the Iveragh peninsula with a length of 170 km.
Our journey started in Killarney the tourist capital of Kerry and makes its way to Killorglin (the home of puck fair).
Our first stop was in Glenbeigh for tea/coffee leaving Glenbeigh and going to Caherciveen for our lunch stop.
We had a optional route to explore Valentia Island which on previous Ring of Kerry Runs had been part of the route but had been changed due to us upgrading our hotel to the Sneem Hotel in Sneem village instead of our Waterville overnight stop.
On arrival in Sneem drivers could indulge in some refreshments and rest before our dinner dance at 8 pm on the Saturday night.
At the dinner dance we have a raffle with the money raised along with other club funds makes up our charity funds.
This years funds of 3500 euro are to be divided between:
- Parents of the Mentally Handycapped
- Donal Walsh Foundation
- Alzheimers Society
- Kerry/Cork Cancer Bus
Our oldest car was a 1911 Ford Model T from Limerick, followed by a 1924 Humber from Cork.
The remander were made up of Riley, Rollsroyce, Bentley, Rover, Mg, Austin, Lancia, Mercedes, Datsun, BMW, Ford (Escord/Capri), Vauxhall, Fiat, Dalmler, Volvo, Porsche and Mini to name a few.
Our Sunday route consisted of departing our hotel in Sneem at 11 am and rejoining the Ring of Kerry for a 22 mile trip to Kenmare town were participants could enjoy a stroll around for shopping before climbing to the top of Molls Gap and then making your descent to Killarney town and the finish of the 35th Ring of Kerry.
But if you have never been on this vintage trip in Kerry don’t despair as there is always next year.
And if you can not wait until then why not come to our Autumn Run in Kenmare in October (18/19 October).
Looking forward to seeing you in the Kingdom soon.