Gordon Bennett car run

THE 10th Gordon Bennett Irish Classic Car Run will take place over the June bank holiday weekend, June 1 - 4.

THE 10th Gordon Bennett Irish Classic Car Run will take place over the June bank holiday weekend, June 1 - 4.

The run will cater for all classic and vintage cars registered prior to 1982. This event commenced in 2003 to commemorate 100 years of a very important race that took place on the island of Ireland in 1903, sponsored by the wealthy American magnate by the name of James Gordon Bennett. This year’s event is not a race but a leisure run of 166km through the counties of Kildare, Laois and Carlow.

On day one, Friday June 1, a civic reception will be held at County Hall, Portlaoise for the launch at 7.30pm. This provides the chairman of the Gordon Bennett committee, Mr John Corcoran, with an opportunity to welcome those in attendance to this special motoring festival and to outline the events over the next three days. This year’s guest speaker will be Mr Brian Maher, from Portlaoise camera club, who will show slides capturing glimpses of Laois.

On Saturday June 2, all cars to assemble at Treacy’s, the Heath, at 10am for a 10.45am start. The cars will travel the Laois Heritage route, stopping off at Emo Court for refreshments, before continuing to the Plaza Centre at County Hall, Portlaoise to collect the contestants of the Rose of Tralee Irish regional finalists 2012 for a parade through Portlaoise town, leaving the plaza centre at 2.30pm. On Saturday night starting at 8.30pm, there will be a gala dinner in the Gandon Inn.

On Sunday June 3, all cars to assemble at Treacy’s, the Heath, at 10.30am for an 11.30am start to drive the historic Gordon Bennett route of 166km through the counties Kildare, Laois, Carlow. Cars will stop at a number of locations on the route, the first being the Moat of Ardscull for viewing and photographs. They will then continue onto Carlow via Castledermot, back into Athy via Barrowhouse and stopping at the Clonard Court Hotel for refreshments.

On Monday June 4, all cars to assemble at Treacy’s, the Heath, at 11am for a leisure run to Durrow and surrounding areas, returning to Treacy’s of the Heath for a BBQ at 3pm. This concludes the weekend’s motoring activities. Hopefully all visitors will leave the Midlands with fond memories of sights seen, friends made and maybe a discussion on an unusual car they haven’t seen before.