Saturday February 29th, the ‘Stolen Day’, was the day the inaugural ARDC Motorsport Forum was held.
This Forum was aimed at Motorsport Officials not only from ARDC, but officials and interested parties from invited clubs that hire SMSP. BMW Owners Club, HSRCA, MGCC all had members come along and join in.
The main aim of the day was to encourage those sitting on the fence to become officials, and enlighten and train the ones that already are.
There were five options on offer;
- Fire & Rescue
- Standard Operating Procedures / Critical Incident Protocols
All aspects of communications at a race track were covered. Radio, Flags, written reports, hand signals and of course verbal. 45 attended this course which was mainly delivered by Tony Thorne, but certainly he did have lots of assistance with flag waving demonstrations and how to use a radio properly. It certainly was not all serious and many one liners were being thrown around the room.
Elaine & Nick Nikiforoff along with David Healy, kept everyone entertained with all the latest updates on all things scrutineering for 2020 in the morning, and a practical demonstration down in the Scrutineering Bay on a Porsche racing car in the afternoon. Nick also managed to lay out lots of bits and pieces for a written quiz during the day. A huge thank you should go to Peter Boylan and Wayne Jones for delivering the car and making it available to us. 23 joined in the fun for this one.
Fire & Rescue
I think of all of them though, Fire & Rescue would have been the most fun. 9 great officials turned up for this one, and they got to SET A CAR ON FIRE!!!!! then put out the fire, but then…..cut the thing up! How much fun would that have been?
Standard Operating Procedures / Critical Incident Protocols
These very serious subjects were left in the very capable hands of Steve Preece. Steve is often our Clerk of Course for our race meetings, but also continues to hold senior positions both at Bathurst 1000 and of course the AGP F1. He has the ability to handle this very delicate subject with his legendary dark humour, but certainly delivers the message and the content very very well. If you have ever been in Race Control at a race meeting, you will understand and appreciate it is par for the course to have a dark sense of humour. There were 52 sitting in the room, and sometimes it was filled with laughter, and sometimes you could hear a pin drop. Like I say, just like Race Control.
This is what we run to try and show everyone just how easy, and how much fun it can be, to become a Motorsport Official here at SMSP for ARDC.
We had 12 sign up, but only 5 managed to actually make it this time. They got to listen to lots of Senior Officials who droped in to give them some info on their respective areas of expertise, but mainly were informed, and entertained, by Stewart Curtis and Steven McLeod. Both Stewart and Steven are our Chief Flag Marshals for our events here at The Park.
In the last few years there must have been approx. 80 – 100 that have gone through this programme, and we are very glad to say that we have a pretty good strike rate on keeping them.
All of the presenters are members of the ARDC, as are most of the officials.
They are also part of the most professional team of motorsport officials in Australia.
This is evident when you watch telecasts of major sporting events and you see them on show, or simply when you come down and Play @ Our Park.
WE are all part of the larger team that makes the events the great success that they are!
Why don’t YOU come and join us?
– Doreen Butchers, ARDC Race Operations Manager.