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Categories ---------------------- (Click here for DOG house) => General Discussion => Topic started by: VinceS on 17 Dec 2012, 04:02 PM

Title: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: VinceS on 17 Dec 2012, 04:02 PM
I am just putting the idea "out there" that we radically change our approach to social riding, as an opportunity has just arisen and I realise I have not got as much "follow through" on the activities expected after the last AGM (see ( to refresh your memory). As many know something about I have been somewhat distracted by some personal life issues. And I just blew up the car engine whilst towing (yep - lotsa smoke, roomfulls of billowing flame - and now have bought an STi drivetrain to fit in its place).

My basic intent at the AGM was to get a proper handle on membership admin (mostly done), set up a calendar going forward (needs 2013 doing), set up automated notices (half done, no result yet) and set up the club to run via Facebook so it should self renew / perpetuate without me being too involved in it directly.

If anyone is uncertain, what I know works REALLY WELL is weekends away - we haven't had a dud yet so I'm happy to do them again. And a Ducati club has a natural role in the racing side, which will flourish when the Ringwood track gets built and we have a home base of sorts - 2013 would now seem to be a "sure thing" for this and I'm happy to be active there. But what is all over the place is social riding and I'm a bit over it. Apart from weather, there is no clear reason why we sometimes have great turn-outs and other times not so. Whilst I love doing the riding, this is not a can I'm going to keep kicking down the road.

When we originally formed this club we discussed at length whether it would be a Ducati specific club or a general Hunter riding club. I believed the latter was the better course but there was strong and very valid support for the former so we went that way. But guess what, I am the only formation member still riding (and in the area) and a bit over the fact that no-one else has stood up to the plate to keep a core active interest hub bubbling away in the club, so I think this piece just might need revisiting.

Through my ongoing participation in the MCC of NSW (which I do enjoy as I feel I make a real difference sometimes) I have recently come to be aware that Bikers Anonymous has restarted a chapter in the area a few months ago. There has always been a close link between the NSWDOC and Sydney BA and I think keeping that excellent relationship intact in the Hunter might be a really good thing. As it happens they have a monthly club meeting on at Edgeworth Bowling Club this Wednesday night (ie 19/12/12) at 7pm, but I intend to get there a bit after 6pm and have a meal prior.

What I am asking for here is for you to come along too and have a look, perhaps help decide what the opportunity is here and maybe chip in when I stand up and address the meeting as I surely will! If you like riding your Ducati that is, and have ever wished there was a bit more consistency to getting out with other like minded people. These are fellow motorcyclists we are talking about here, it won't be hard to have a decent chat about "stuff" - so let's do it!

Whilst the following quote comes from a confidential part of the MCC's website, it is from a local BA member and I'm sure there wouldn't be a problem publishing it. Whilst the context is a little unclear, it does sound like they have an active core interested in going for rides: "And as my luck would have it, I am surrounded by an excellent core of very competent and technical riders willing to share their knowledge,  I can't stress enough the importance of TRAINING for all motorcyclists."

For more info see: (

I am sending this to Friends also as it is "direction of the club" stuff not just riding, and anybody is more than welcome to chip in an idea, opinion or whatever - let's hear 'em, or better yet see you Wednesday evening! All the best........Vince
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: VinceS on 20 Dec 2012, 07:57 AM
Some feedback: I went along to this meeting last night along with a couple of other DOGs and was surprised to see 39 people in attendance, all having a rollicking good time and clearly well into the "social" piece of what a social motorcycling club is all about, great to see.

Their prez (Neville) dragged me up front to address the meeting (no warning / whatever but that's OK) and the open discussion that ensued decided they would be delighted to have the HunterDOGs come along to any of their rides and they were totally happy for us to retain our own identity. It was pretty clear that, when it comes down to it, these people are just damn keen to go riding and participate in all the social side that naturally comes along with that and are not too fussed about the details after that! They clearly have a range of faster and slower riders so we should fit right in as that is what happens for us too. They say they typically don't ride longer than an hour or two. I assume that is each way but will find out in time.

So my intention is to go along for a ride sometime soon and see exactly how it all works, then most likely decree that our regular riding schedule is to become a joint ride with BA Hunter. Funnily enough they ride the same roads we do and even the Hardleys make it through, so it should be interesting to mix it up a bit. I did the update thing on the Ringwood raceway and there was a fair bit of interest in that too, the more the merrier I say!

PS: I will just add as I was confused about it that Bikers Anon and Bikers Australia are different entities. My comment about joint activities with BA Sydney and NSWDOC was actually about Bikers Anon who are here and TOTALLY Sydney-centric, as opposed to Bikers Australia and you can see here that they get out a lot more!
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: Brett on 28 Dec 2012, 11:06 PM

I think that it's perhaps important to maybe temper 'what Vince wants from a motorcycle club' with 'what others ( including members ) may want from a motorcycle club', before embarking on a unilateral change of direction, or even talk of amalgamations, etc.  And I more than appreciate that's what you've tried to kick off here, so I hope this is taken in the context of contribution, as it's intended.

Right from the beginning, there has been an underlying anxiety, in some quarters within our ranks, with this overwhelming desire to drum up consistently escalating numbers, for both the rides and the breakfasts, as some sort of acknowledgement of achievement.  To the point that some members ( past and present ) worked themselves into quite a state, simply trying to work out how build or maintain this ever consistent growth.  With all things considered, the variety and consistency of the attendees, has always been more about what was on, and when ( and the weather, for pussies like me ). All of the anxiety and exasperation by the few, effectively amounted to nothing, other than a little chest pain for those most concerned.  The fact remains, that the number of attendees ( to any of our events ) has shrunk and grown, simply depending on people's availability, mood and what was on ( oh, and the weather )?

Some people will always want to dust the bike off, and head out for a quick bite on a Sunday morning.   Others prefer to spend the day in the saddle, for an all day club ride, and others ( with an attention span far greater than mine ) want to ride all weekend with a sleepover in between.  Some, like to do all of those things.  The reason we all joined this club, is because most choose to do all or any of that, on a Ducati.  If they don't have a Ducati, they generally wish they did ?  If they didn't wish that before the rides or breakfasts, they generally do afterwards ? And so on...

These other clubs you've been canvassing, have been around since we kicked off ( I'm actually surprised you didn't mention Ulysses ), and they continue to offer different things to different people, but not a lot more than we do ( did ).  My long winded point here, is that, if things have changed for Vince, then perhaps Vince should look at additional club options, and not necessarily take the entire club on the journey.  I appreciate that they are 'happy for us to keep our identity', because I never thought that was up for grabs.  If 'the problem' is along the lines of Vince feels he has to do 'all of this' himself, tell us what 'all of this' is, and we'll help ?

I do think that the Hunter Ducati Owners Group still has some validity left in it, at least before we look at converting it to the Sunter Ducati Owners Group ( that's a joke Vince ), Biker's Anonymous, or a chapter of something else...

Happy to discuss.

Speak soon.
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: VinceS on 29 Dec 2012, 12:52 PM
I like and generally agree with what Brett has said here and think this is an excellent opportunity to get a little perspective on what's really going on. Hopefully then inspiring some other kind of action, like for instance saying "I'm IN!" - and having a body that will actually go with that good intention.

Let's start with the simple fact that I have been saying since day 1 that I don't want to ever own or run a bike (or any) club as such but will be an excellent participator and support person. Yet now, in effect, I find myself in that precise position and it is a classic case of "not happy Jan". I believe fundamentally that any social club, whatever the specific interest area, works well because there is a core group of good people that hang together and keep it rolling, and in that mix / available to the core are some decent skills sets to actually pull it off and keep it moving along nicely. Obviously the enthusiasm needs to remain, which is pretty easy with Ducatis. Also it needs to not become "cliquey" with an "in crowd" and an "out crowd" which is the essence of the problem that occurred with a previous Ducati interest club in the area - that one was also afflicted with the other main risk area of social clubs - "personality issues" (which I euphemistically refer to as "the dickhead factor").

The HunterDOGs has had a zero count on "dickhead factor" since inception including anyone who has joined / attended / whatever, which I am pretty happy about I gotta say! Certainly there has been no "cliquey" stuff either. Our "issue" has been with natural attrition where the original active core have unavoidably moved on but not been replaced by like minded enthusiastic PARTICIPATIVE people coming in. A web forum doesn't cut it to maintain the effective operation of the club, it is just a tool. Neither does one person carrying all the load as they will soon wonder why they are doing it and what are they getting out of it and not be happy with the answers. Welcome to the here and now.........

Should we get to a place where we have an active interested committee / group of friends and have regular bbq's around each other's place then you beauty, we'll be off again. But otherwise, despite what I might wish and think I'll do to make it work, I am kidding myself I truly want to / will do it by myself. I got more enjoyment out of helping a (prospective) member pass a DECC noise test with his termis still on a couple of weeks ago than anything else I have done to prop up everyone else's good intentions with the club but zero actions in a long time.

OK so that is some perspective. What others may "want" comes with "and do something REAL about that ISN'T just saying it". First and foremost it needs to be "an answer THAT WORKS" and that is my sole motivation, happy to have any alternate that works, but the only true alternate RIGHT NOW is "caretaker mode". Anything else needs your body on the line, so to speak. I will also say I have no idea where the "growth is king" perception has come from, I regard that as a natural outcome of a well set-up club which, broadly speaking, this one is. I have only ever wanted to see a reasonably consistent level of participation with due regard to weather and changing of the mix under the general theme that "lots of people want to and will make it there lots of the time".

I certainly do agree that the format of social engagement and riding needs a once-over. In essence mixing it up more, but I am damn sure I am not going to single-handedly sort it out! As a technical point I have explored ONE other club, and the concept of exploring Ulysses is ridiculous in the terms this was being done, that is plainly a club one would simply be a member of if they wanted to.

Anyway, to some relevant feedback now that I have been on a ride. What I was contemplating is making wherever BA were going for a ride to on the third Sunday of the month be our ride, and the simple fact that a few Ducatis were likely to turn up means BA would select routes / activities more consistent with our general interest to ride the better roads. This is not out of the question but my general assessment is that it wouldn't be a "marriage made in heaven" and ultimately we wouldn't see the benefits we were looking for. In simple terms the people I met were all just fine and come from the normal scatter of our fellow humans, there was no bad behaviour and everyone was very welcoming which I thought was just great. I did join the club and will continue a personal association over time, but I suspect your typical Ducati owner is going to have a little difficulty adjusting to the simple fact that most of the riders like to wear black vests and sprinkle "stuff" all over it, including their nick names. So there is a general "outlaw biker look" without ANY of the underlying reality, which I am fine with as it is about the people for me, but I know this is not such a common view in others. Also there are a lot of cruisers which has its own reality about riding routes / techniques. Not that I didn't have some fun buzzing back and forwards in gaps that opened up between differently skilled riders........

However there is a silver lining. One fellow I particularly like, "Trip", has a Buell, and he knows how to ride it well. He is endeavoring to get the Buell owners club to be active in the area again and I get the sense he expects to be successful. This I think could be a good thing, but is a "work in progress" for now.

The other thing I really respect and appreciate with how BA do things is the fantastic participation rates they get, out of 60 members they are getting about half along to rides which they do ALMOST EVERY weekend. Their "secret technique" is regular sms communication letting people know what is going on, including "making the call" on weather on the morning of the ride in plenty of time to call it on or off. Another thing is they use Glendale Hungry Jacks as their most frequent departure point as it has fuel and coffee adjacent and typically they are all there half an hour before the departure time for a chin wag. The guy that sends all the sms's is the President who will typically turn up but will only go on some of the rides as he, like everyone, has a life too - whilst recognising that riding with your friends is an important part of that life! They have several women riders but it was mostly blokes.

I am aware one can do great deals on sms rates so maybe this is a tool we should look more closely at. But first, if you have a body to offer up complete with a truck load of enthusiasm, let's hear about it. Otherwise the very appealing activities around my last post updating the pillion tips article info are going to take precedence I gotta say!
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: VinceS on 05 Apr 2013, 05:55 PM
Just to log the fact that our PO Box expired a couple of days ago and I handed in the keys as I see no point to continue with it. I have updated the About Us page with this fact, and also declared the total non-participant status of all and sundry as I simply am not going to carry the thing unless we have some genuine buy in and participation from others. I may very well organise weekends away or the like in future as they are always popular and brilliantly successful, but otherwise it looks like the race track needs to happen before we get a regular participation thing going. I just checked the DA status on that and no gawd danged change, who knows why that is but I will ring the council for an update, if I remember!, next week......
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: TopDOG on 06 Apr 2013, 03:33 PM
I'm going to the dogs breakfast tomorrow even if the rest of our clubs not going to participate in what we have worked so hard in making a friendly group of like minded Ducati riding and owning club if his club folds up shop i can add it to my things ive lost and loved which will make me cry myself to sleep until i die which if it does i hope will be soon :'(  so please ladies and gents pull together and help me continue what i started with my friends  8)
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: TopDOG on 16 Apr 2015, 08:09 PM
Personally i think that there are enough riding clubs but this one being brand specific keeps the clown ratio down who are just here to try to ride faster than the other guy or gal on a bike that cost us far more to buy it would be like the Ferrari club letting Mitsubishi drivers in!!!

but i cant do either at the moment but with medical miracles who knows, either way we started the club because we love the brand and the brands supported me well and the CEO of ducati Australia has even past on to me some stuff directly from this immaculate brand of motorcycle, it has a lot of members who also love and support the brand and we don't need a roaring electric symbols/whipper snipper powered thing playing while the bass solo is happening!!  :P

other brands of bikes have their own clubs and this was ours before i ruined it all by not being the old topdog promoting and provoking us all to join together and go ride our machines with style  8)  so all who read this please voice your support with me people who love our Ducati's tm
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: VinceS on 17 Apr 2015, 03:12 PM
I started a topic here to discuss ride route options, and made some comments about club direction. They are as follows and, as mentioned at the end, if there is a discussion to be had let's have it and I would separate out the topic. Scottie then made some perfectly valid points so this is why he made them, which now needs to be read first in order for his to make any sense.

What I said first:

The effectiveness or otherwise of social riding groups is driven by lots of things, that most of us don't care for the subtleties of as we just wanna do it - when and how it suits us. My personal belief is that the days for brand specific clubs are long over, and what matters more is experience types. So people that want to go on major rides or just Sunday morning latte sipping are probably going to band together and intermingle as they like.

Back when this club was formed there was a fair bit of debate whether it should be brand specific or something else. We have gone with "brand-preference and all others welcome" - which has been a subtlety that made no difference! I have been thinking we need a rename to Hunter MUGs for Hunter Motorcycle Users Group. But that is a separate discussion (which if anyone wants to have go for it and I will split it off to a separate topic!).
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: VinceS on 17 Apr 2015, 04:01 PM
OK, now that I have managed to get the two previous posts out of order, I think what Scottie says is totally valid. All we need is participation and hey presto. But we're not getting that, unless I do a bunch of stirring to get it to happen. Well guess what, I am totally happy to contribute a fair bit, but it is not all about me! When is a club a club? Good intentions alone don't cut it!

So I have stopped organising and leading monthly rides and go for a ride when and how I like - as does everybody else! If Kellie and I feel like a weekend away we'll organise it, sometimes via the club and invite all comers. They are always very successful for the people that go - and our experience is that the distance involved is inversely proportional to the qty of people attending. A Bathurst weekend away gets lots and they are pretty cool - but a ride to the Island might only get 2 or 3. No drama, it's all good! But we should plan another Bathurst trip away soon, don't you think???

The email list has some 200 people on it and every single one is an interested and decent person. That is a great strength. It does mean I can conveniently intermittently announce useful info to fellow Ducatisti / motorcyclists and people use it as they will, so that is a good thing. But it is not operating like a real club and something has to change in order for it to do so. Whilst I fully appreciate all Scottie's sentiments the past is the past and can only be a part of the future if people wish it so, AND ACT ON IT. We need more than "please voice your support with me people who love our Ducatis", it definitely needs to be so much more than that....

I will not forever "carry" the thing as an intermittent distraction - something has to change. There is no rush as the club is set up to exist for a long time with little maintenance. And anyway I am about to check in to hospital to get my leg lengths evened up so I ain't doin nuffin in the short term - should be good by spring. That'll keep me quiet, hopefully!!!

The way this club is set up and run (joke) needs to be something else entirely, so I was just (re-)starting the conversation. If I get to the next stage, which is properly formulating a proposal, then it will go to all for comment and we'll see what we get. But doesn't the Hunter MUG (Motorcycle Users Group) have an appealing ring to it? MUGGettes (Motorcycle Users Group Girls) welcome of course! Not to say that there wouldn't be a MUD (Motorcycle Users Ducati) chapter. This is just an idea for discussion, I am not hooked on it.

There are notes I've written earlier here that I contemplated an unofficial alignment with Bikers Australia, but soon enough figured that wasn't really going to work that well. But I will say that club is run brilliantly and they get excellent participation rates - which I have learnt a thing or 20 about how to do better.

All we truly need is an active committee, having BBQ's at our respective houses / selected pub/s, and then we will see a rebirthing of what Scottie originally was the primary driver behind getting going in the first place. The clown ratio is not an issue; that is a function of how things are run and has certainly not been a factor in the past - I think we could keep that going in any future reinvention, in whatever shape it comes.

So, if you could see yourself getting into it and having a go at leading an ACTIVE Ducati social riding club, then put your hand up and let's stir it back into life. There have been some kinda-credible attempts since Scottie posted-out, but the reality is that anyone that has tried has got seriously distracted by their life events as that's the kind of people that own Ducatis! It seems that a key requirement to do well is a good chunk of charisma and a steady 9-5ish type job. Plus a generally supportive family situation, in the many ways that can happen. Scottie had this. No-one else that has had a go since has really had the trifecta needed here.
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: TopDOG on 17 Apr 2015, 05:29 PM
exactly right and well said Vince and im glad that i said what i said without offending you and you're right the club needs participation from its members before it becomes a good place to hang out with your like minded mates, so please come on guys and get into supporting this awesome club with its great members on awesome rides and help me and Vince bring joy back to this club so please write on the forum even to tell me off ive still got a strong shoulders and i can take it on the chin too just participate please somehow anyhow!!  ;D
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: TopDOG on 20 May 2015, 10:05 AM
Personally I think that having this club being for Ducati owners only relies on those who like me wanted to ride with intelligent like minded people and not just a bunch of tossers who are just there to prove they can ride faster than the bloke or gal who spent more than they did on a cheap rice burner than an Italian stallion worth riding but what was it the word champion moto gp rider raced before retirement? yes that's right the only brand that matters here Ducati  :P So as a Ducati owners group stand together folks and attend our club rides and social breakfasts to keep this club what it was started for to give you all the same pleasure it gave to me Riding with my good friends with the same tastes in the best motorcycles ever built!!! So ride proudly and ride loudly on your V-twin Ducati
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: TopDOG on 04 Jun 2015, 04:06 PM (
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: TopDOG on 05 Jun 2015, 10:43 AM
here is the type of engine that this great club was founded to listen to!!!
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: Rob Lindsay on 08 Jun 2015, 02:49 PM
I would like to have a "DOG" patch on my leathers and jacket. What's available?
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: VinceS on 08 Jun 2015, 04:52 PM
G'day Rob,

Mate, until the meaty issues raised in post #9 here are dealt with there is going to be no decorations to be had for love or money!

When there was a lot of participation we got plenty of t shirts, jackets, beer holders and the like printed up. Many of us still wear them proudly when out and about. At least I do - but I know who many of the others are and I reckon I'm not alone!

But it ain't gunna happen until a few people join in and get this thing going properly again. Are you one? Let's find a way...
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: TopDOG on 21 Jul 2015, 05:19 PM
im also still proud to wear my gear out anywhere and i cant even afford a Ducati anymore even to keep beside my bed for cold nights when i need a cuddle something warm or to wet my floors down for some doughnuts on it or if worse stays the worst not that it could get much worse apart from either dieing or having to ride any type of jap bike both of which would have the same outcome with me wanting to kill myself for lowering my standards to allowing myself to want to throw my leg over one let alone starting it to ride one and if i could choose a new model Vince designed of wheelchair for me it would still be a ducati or even a Ferrari instead of a Mitsubishi its the same type of poor choice to be made so if you can afford to start out where you should and if you cant keep saving until you can!!! :P
Title: Re: Should the Make-up of the HunterDOG Club Change?
Post by: TopDOG on 21 Jul 2015, 05:31 PM
this picture says it all!!!  ;D