Annual Conclave Award

We stole it and we ain’t giving it back!

Annual Conclave Award

Annual Conclave Award

The Annual Conclave Award was created many years ago to be awarded annually to the club (TC Motoring Guild or Abingdon Rough Riders) with the most TCs present at each conclave.  A mischievous pair of TCMG’ers known only as Frick and Frack (their names rhyme with “Clarence Weiss and Bob McKarney”) had an annoying habit of stealing the Abingdon Rough Riders banner at each conclave and hiding it away.  Their mistake was boasting about their heist, so the banner was always found or returned.

One year, the Conclave Award went missing.  Due to the previous hijinks of Frick and Frack, the blame was laid upon them by many ARR members .  It was said that in this year they decided the banner wasn’t enough, so they also stole the Annual Conclave Award, which ARR had presumably just won.

During a conversation many years later (2014), the true culprit of this crime finally stepped forward and had this to say…

The Statute of Limitations has long passed…I hope.

Well, I hate to ruin a good story. But it was I who ‘stole’ the Conclave Trophy.

After the banquet dinner I was about the last to leave for my room. I spotted the trophy sitting on a table unguarded and Frick n Frack were a few steps behind me. I grabbed the trophy to save it from going ‘south’ as I knew it would. The ARR had the most TC’s at the Conclave that year so the trophy belonged to the ARR anyway. It was not often the ARR could beat the TCMG in percentage of TC’s attending against club membership back then. I believe it had been years since the ARR held the trophy.

I hid the trophy in my TC boot that night. The next day no one said a word about the trophy, so I thought I’d wait to see how long it took for the realization to set in. It was in ‘safe hands’ anyway. A year went by! The trophy was on the back burner of my mind. Before the next Conclave Allan started asking around for our trophy to take to the Conclave. He was sure it was in LATCMG hands. By then I was sort of embarrassed for not mentioning it sooner. So I devised a plan to sneak it into Phil Marino’s TC. I could just picture Phil denying knowledge of how it came to be in his TC. I intended on ‘saving’ Phil eventually.

So, the next Conclave, I believe was Sky Ranch…The Friday night after dinner I went to my TC to retrieve the trophy. As I was making toward Phil’s TC several Conclave merry-makers came out to do some tire kicking. They saw me and quickly headed in my direction; I had to ditch the trophy quick. Frank Borgardt’s TC was in front of me between me and the merry-makers. We all retired to the bar.

Then I got to thinking. It would be unfair to the TCMG if the ARR thought the trophy had been in possession of our southern friends; they get into enough trouble as it is. So I left it in Frank’s TC for the night.

No one really thought Frank was the culprit, so I decided to let the mystery continue.

Forgive me Frank!

Bill Traill

And during the conversation which brought about Bill’s confession, one of the original pranksters replied with the following…

To Bill Traill –
Thank you for your full, though rather belated, confession regarding the Conclave Trophy, Bill. I was writing up a rather firm denial of any Frick and Frack participation in the disappearance of this trophy, but halfway through I realized that no one would believe me, so I trashed it.
Thanks again.
Bob McKarney

p.s. Allan was correct in that “Frick and Frack” grew beginning with Clarence selling me a Honda motorcycle about 1970. The friendship was firmed with the purchase and first conclave trip of my TC. From there, it went thru many additional fiascos: the first street restoration of my TC; the purchase, restoration and sale of a TR 3a; a disassembled TD purchased, stored and sold without the knowledge of Barbara or Jean, since at the time we had 14 cars between us. Stealing the ARR banner was a mere sideline. Many many other experiences through the years exemplified to me the friendship offered by the TCMG and the ARR.

Frick and Frack were and are a prime example of what a blessing true friendship can be. It has survived and grown for 44 years, and still counting.

But none of this explains how the Conclave Award ended up in TCMG’s possession for so long, presumed by ARR to be lost or stolen.  It is rumored that someone, in classic Frick and Frack style, went into the rear compartment of Allan Chalmers’ car and stole it. Perhaps the culprit will ‘fess up eventually, or someone will remember how this event really came to pass and let us know!

In any case, the award (unlike the ARR banner) was never returned to ARR and eventually became the official gavel used at TC Motoring Guild monthly meetings, where it remains (under a watchful eye) to this day. Years after the heist, ARR finally gave up and made a second award for themselves. Both awards are still updated each year with the name and date of our conclaves.


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