THE Motormen's run in the FA Cup came to a crashing halt at Gigg Lane on Saturday as slack defending early on in the tie ensured they were comprehensively beaten by their hosts.
Hopes were high before kick-off that Vauxhall, appearing in the first round proper for only the second time, might pull off another famous giantkilling against Football League opposition.
But there was to be no repeat of the QPR upset of two years ago as Bury quickly displayed the gulf in class between the 52 places that separate these sides in the pyramid.
The Lancashire club had not progressed past the first round since 1999 and determined to make sure there would be no upset on this occasion, killed off all the visitors' hopes with a three-goal blitz in the first 25 minutes.
After making wholesale changes for the midweek Cheshire Senior Cup tie at Stalybridge, Owen Brown reverted to nine of the 11 starters from the previous Saturday's Trophy encounter with Ashton.
Youngsters Colin Flood and Karl O'Donnell made way for the more experienced Carl Spellman and Darren Wright, scorer in the last round against Northwich.
As the two sides took to the field, it was no doubt a proud occasion for everyone connected with the Rivacre Park club, including former chairman and now general secretary of the Transport and General Workers Union Tony Woodley, who was lending his support. But at the same time, it was sad to see so many empty seats in the away end.
Officially, 252 Ellesmere Port fans made the trip which takes less than an hour, but many must have been seated in the main stand as there looked far less than that behind the goal.
Vauxhall were on the back foot from the start with a Brian Barry-Murphy right-wing corner striking the crossbar and Tim Dittmer having to save well from a Dave Nugent header.
As the Motors survived the first couple of early scrapes, many around me wondered if this was going to be one of those days on which the Non-League custodian might play a blinder before the minnows snatched victory.
But their dreams were quickly shattered as, on seven minutes, Nugent found Dwayne Mattis who fired in from 12 yards out despite Dittmer getting a glove to the ball.
Bury doubled their advantage on 19 minutes as Nugent all too easily cut inside from the left-hand touchline to dance through the Vauxhall rearguard, before laying off to Chris Porter for a simple finish.
The Motormen were dead and buried six minutes later as Mattis left both James Glendenning and Phil Brazier in his wake to head in a third from skipper Dave Challinor's cross from the left.
It was to be a bittersweet afternoon for Great Sutton man Challinor, captaining the Shakers against his hometown team.
On 39 minutes, he was left totally unmarked at the back post to nod in Bury's fourth goal from another Barry-Murphy right-wing corner kick.
Following an innocuous challenge just four minutes into the second half, Challinor was stretchered off with medial ligament damage which is espected to keep him sidelined for three weeks.
After some rather tame efforts, Vauxhall scored the goal of the match on 61 minutes when Wayne Mc-Dermott was first to a loose clearance from Challinor's replacement Paul Scott, and volleyed in spectacularly with the outside of his left foot.
His 'reward' was almost instantaneous substitution but the man who took his place, Colin Flood, set up Vauxhall's second on 73 minutes as he slotted through to fellow sub Karl O'Donnell, who beat keeper Andy Marriott when one-on-one.
Bury immediately dispelled any comeback chances, though, as they added a fifth just 46 seconds later when a long ball from the kick-off found Nugent, who beat three Vauxhall defenders before taking the ball around Dittmer to seal victory.
Bury: Andy Marriott, Lee Unsworth, Tom Kennedy, Danny Swailes, Dave Challinor (Paul Scott 49), Colin Woodthorpe, Dwayne Mattis, Dave Flitcroft (Simon Whaley 77), Brian Barry-Murphy, Dave Nugent (Jon Newby 81), Chris Porter.
Vauxhall: Tim Dittmer, Lee Woodyatt, Wayne McDermott (Colin Flood 62), James Glendenning, Carl Spellman (Chris O'Brien 78), Phil Brazier, Carl Nesbitt, Robbie Lawton, Darren Wright, James Olsen, Peter Cumiskey (Karl O'Donnell 67). At -tendance: 2,566.
View from the dugout
Vauxhall manager Owen Brown: 'I'm disappointed that we never did ourselves justice as a team and did not play like we know we can. We conceded some bad goals from set pieces that we would normally be able to deal with in our league, but the lad Barry-Murphy was putting in some excellent crosses and his delivery was superb.
'To be fair to Bury, they took their chances and it was all over by half-time. You've got to give Graham Barrow credit, he had someone watching every game we played after the draw was made and Bury got on top early on and never let us get into our stride. Andy Marriott did well to save from Peter Cumiskey in the opening minutes so that could have been the turning point.'
'The decision to substitute Wayne McDermott had already been made. Wayne's having a personal goal-of-the-season competition and obviously he was gutted to come off, but we couldn't change things just because he'd scored. Dave Nugent was impressive. He played for me at Liverpool at the then Centre of Excellence U11s/U12s. Perhaps I coached him too well?'
Bury manager Graham Barrow: 'We paid Vauxhall the utmost respect and had watched them three times. Their team is made up mostly of Liverpool lads who have a passion for the game and try and pass and play in the right way. We've been on to our lads all week without frightening them about how we needed to do a professional job, and we would have taken 1-0 before the kick-off.
'Vauxhall showed at times that they are a useful team and all we could do today was win. We'd worked on some set pieces and they came off. I treat the FA Cup as a manager like I did as a player and just as Vauxhall's players will have enjoyed coming here today, we're now dreaming of getting through to the third round and walking out to a full house at United, City or Bolton.'