That was the year that a group of enthusiasts got together in Blarney, Co.
Within a short space of just six months, Cork Motor club boasted a membership of some 140 eager members. The majority of these had been, and in some cases still are, members of other motor clubs in the county. There was also a large number of people who were first introduced to motor sport through becoming members of this new and enthusiastic club. During this first year of 1976 Cork Motor Club did not run any major events but club members were nonetheless kept busy mainly through organising social functions and marshalling on other club's events throughout the country.
Indeed it was through marshalling that Cork Motor Club first made its existence known to the rallying public. On the 1976 Circuit of Ireland Rally, Cork Motor Club members set up and marshalled two of that event's Special Stages, one at Borlin and the other at Gortnagane. Banners and Cork Motor Club stickers proclaimed the presence of the "
The first Annual General Meeting of
A board of directors was elected and included Dick O'Brien, Declan Mullally, Brian Mattsson, Michael 'Bones' O'Connor, Chris O'Mahony, Dick O'Rourke, Dave Bogan (RIP) and Billy Ryan. Almost immediately plans were set in train for the running of Cork Motor Club's first major event, the West Cork Rally. An organising committee was set up under the direction of Clerk of the Course, Declan Mullally, to whom the job presented nothing new, Declan Mullally having run the Cork '20' Rally for the previous few years. Declan Mullally was ably assisted by the likes of Michael "Bones" O'Connor (Assistant COC), who had clerked the Moonraker Rally since 1975; Dick O'Brien, another former Cork '20' Clerk of the Course; Dick O'Rourke, Clerk of the Course of the 1976 Circuit of Munster Rally and Dermot Locke, who was described at the time as the next best thing to a computer where results were concerned.
The 1977 West Cork Rally was the competition beginning of what we feel is