Car club to honour legend on Sunday

THE life of a legend of local motor sport will again be honoured when the Maffra and District Car Club hosts the Noel Burley Memorial Hillclimb this Sunday.

Racing at the Boisdale hillclimb complex will begin at 10am.

The event will be the eighth and final round of the MADCC Hillclimb Championship.

There will be free entry for spectators, while a kiosk will be open offering food and drink.

Noel Burley died of cancer in 1980 aged 53. Such was his standing in the motorsport community, some of Australia’s top motoring personalities attended his funeral at St Mary’s Church in Maffra.

Two-time Australian rally champion George Fury was among the pall bearers, while only the Bathurst 1000 kept legendary racers Peter Brock and Alan Moffatt from attending.

Burley was one of the early members of MADCC.

After buying a Mini 850, Burley attended a motorkhana run by the club in 1967. Winning two events, his prize was a club membership.

Burley held many positions in the club and organised many motorkhana events and rallies.

He also worked on some of the biggest rallies in Australia, including the London to Sydney and Repco Reliability Trial.

Burley’s organisation and reporting of championship car rallies and endurance trials for motorcycles won him clear adulation.

His scoring and timing systems for motorcycle enduros in the 1970s have been adopted throughout most of Australia and are still in use today.

Burley became well-known outside the motorsport community through his program on radio station 3TR, “Valve Bounce”. Reporting on national events, he would often promote local car and motorcycle club events in the same breath.

Burley helped raise funds for several local charities and sports clubs by organising the Shell Dealers Car Rally.

These events were just casual observation and navigational rallies, which good times had in the cars during the day before enjoying the night time entertainment.

To honour Burley’s contribution to the club, motorsport and community, MADCC has hosted the Noel Burley Memorial Hillclimb since 1982 with a senior trophy awarded. The junior trophy has been awarded since 1998 and the women’s trophy since 2010.