Motorcycling Queensland, formerly known as Motorcycling (Australia) Queensland, and prior to this as the Auto Cycle Union of Queensland (ACUQ), was founded in 1924.
The first Annual General Meeting was held in August 1925 at which time the ACUQ had a total of eight (8) affiliated Clubs.
In 2013 Motorcycling Queensland has almost 90 affiliated clubs and close to 7,000 individual licence holders.
The following is an article from 'The Ipswich Advertiser' dated Thursday 5 August 1965, regarding the first ever race meeting at Tivoli Raceway.
90 Years of MQ
March 2014 marked 90 years since a group of motorcycle riders gathered at Spicer’s Gap, south of today’s Cunningham Gap. They represented four clubs from Brisbane and Toowoomba, and they agreed to form the Auto Cycle Union of Queensland.
From this beginning Motorcycling Queensland started on the journey to what we have today.
Early riders then realised that a club was a good way to attain those things that lone riders could not.
As clubs started to find new and differing ways to have competitions they saw that an overseeing group would ensure that the rudimentary rules of the day were observed correctly.
Another 4 years was to pass before each state’s oversight body at the time gathered to form the Auto Cycle Council of Australia, now Motorcycling Australia. Some states were represented by a single club, and the rules of the day were quite restrictive in some ways. An example of this was a complete ban on any participation by females.
With the beginning of speedway and its growth and popularity in the depression years, riders and promoters were ambitious enough to export this type of competition to New Zealand and later England. They prospered with many becoming household names and comparatively wealthy.
The first world championship in motorcycle sport was held in 1936 and won by an Australian, Lionel van Praag. Americans and New Zealanders soon made the competitions very worthwhile events.
Since those beginnings at Spicer’s Gap our state body held meetings in various state government offices in Brisbane, moving around as office holders moved in their employment, as many were public servants.
Prior to 1940 there was a move afoot for motorcyclists to join the Rocklea Show Society as that group was in decline and our forward thinking predecessors saw an opportunity to obtain a site already equipped with buildings and a track used at that time for horse events. The president of the time, (Phillip Stewart ), in fact from the very beginning was also the secretary of Tattersall’s club and knew of the situation. War intervened and motorcyclists from all over ‘joined up’ to be a part of the war effort. A grand plan lapsed and was lost forever.
One of those public servants was Noel Stitt who was in the property division of the Department of Public Instruction, as the Education department was then known. Noel took part in road trials of the early days, and was heavily involved with speedway and dirt track competition as an official. In about 1950 he left the public service to try his hand at farming at Mt Walker, and saw that he could not continue as secretary of the ACUQ, so he persuaded Jack Elms to take on the job. Noel was the delegate for Queensland to ACCA and also secretary of the separate body controlling speedway the ASCC. Noel found that farming was not the joy he may have thought and sold the farm to become a corner store owner in North Ipswich. So began his involvement in the Ipswich Motorcycle Club which lasted up to his death in 1981. As the Ipswich club rented part of a farm at Tivoli and ran dirt track racing there from about 1958, when the farmer decided to sell he offered the property to Noel on behalf of the Ipswich Club. Noel knew that the club could not afford such a purchase and so asked if the ACU executive in about 1967 should buy the farm of about 50 acres. They did, and it is still owned by MQ today. Purchase price was about $8750. Difficult at the time, but easy today. The funds came from the Riders Accident Fund of the day, and this upset some members greatly.
In 1975 a decision was made to erect what is now Moreton District’s club house. This allowed office space for our volunteer administrator Noel Stitt, and part time typist, as well as shower and toilets, and a large hall. Money for this was borrowed from ACCA at half ‘bank rates’. ACCA councillors in Brisbane for the annual meeting in 1977 were impressed with the building and adjacent tracks. Both dirt track and motocross tracks had been used for national championships prior to the visit.
Some $250,000. Later a kitchen and staff toilets were added and as part of this approval process, city council insisted sealed car parking was provided. Cost of that was as great as the original building, but we managed. The MX track used for the 1976 national championships was used as a first ever practice facility. The funds generated by this helped repay loans.
For all of that it was a wise investment, and has been used as a correctly zoned motorcycling venue ever since. Its value was used by MQ’s board to purchase adjacent house blocks in Gordon Street Ipswich, and for the construction of our current office and rental tenancy premises, which help to repay the bank loan used.
Also monies were loaned to Townsville Club to purchase a large tract of land at Woodstock. This was helped by the ACU’s corporate status, as most clubs in those days were not incorporated, and so could not own property. This property too has been vastly changed in size and configuration over the past 35 or so years, and ownership has been transferred to the club.
So, where to for now? Clubs still are good places to belong, and can still make things to happen that lone riders or even families of riders cannot. State bodies will always rely on strong clubs with imaginative leaders and ideas to carry motorcycling forward. Keep in mind always that each one of us started out to have fun. It is still available for those who imagine and work to this goal.
Mr P. Bell, Mr K. Baker (dec), Mr D. Beak, Mr F. Barber Jnr(dec), Mr S. Brown (dec), Mrs B. Carucci (dec), Mr K. Caldwell (dec), Mr R.Clarke, Mr R. Davidson, Mr M. Doohan, Mr P. Driessens (dec), Mr J. Elms, Mr R.Freeman, Mr J. Gantz (dec), Mr E. Farrelly (dec), Mr A. Hallett (dec), Mr A.Halley, Mr L. Hogg, Mr. A. Malone, Mr A. Markley, Mr D. Newell, Mr R. Newitt(dec),Mr B. Newton, Mr M. Pohlmann, Mr R. Rice, Mr E. Rook (dec), Mr L. Sherrin(dec), Mrs M. Steele (dec), Mr N. Stitt (dec), Mr R. Warry, Mr I. Wightman, MrD. Rumble.
Motorcycling Queensland Presidents