Section Officials - What do they do?

1/12th Circuit

Taking on a BRCA Section Committee role can be a daunting prospect. Those who do it will always feel apprehensive and a little unsure of what might be in store for them, particularly if it’s their first time doing something of this kind.

The important thing to remember if you’re going to stand for election is that the section and its activities/racing should matter to you. Some people just want to go racing and don’t care much about the rules and procedures, how things are administered or even the promotion of the RC hobby. That is of course perfectly OK, but if that is you then perhaps a role as an official is not for you? If however, those things do matter to you then you could end up being just what your section and the association needs. A bit of enthusiasm and knowledge can go a very long way and you will be surprised how much you can learn along the way as well. Being an official can be a thankless, often difficult and sometimes stressful task, but it can also be enjoyable and very rewarding to know that you’re involved with creating and steering something which has a positive influence on a lot of people, many of whom are your friends and peers. It’s good to put something back in sometimes.

There is always a shortage of officials, and it’s even more difficult to find the right people for the jobs sometimes. To that end, even the smallest contribution could go a long way to ensuring the future success and prosperity of your section of RC racing.

One thing that is for sure is that it is essential that a committee such as this must support and encourage each other. It should work towards common goals and act on behalf of racers and the section as a whole. There is no room here for hidden or personal agendas!

The effective operation of a section committee also relies on the help and support of its drivers. Frequent complaints and gripes about decisions that are made and the way in things are done can alienate officials, who in most cases have acted in what they believe to be the best interests of the section and its racers. Constructive input is welcomed, as is the offer of help and assistance, however insignificant it may seem.

The best officials tend to be racers themselves. Racers who are also officials are able to see things from both sides of ‘the fence’ and so their decisions and thought processes are considerate of those who compete and the people who organise and run events. In turn that helps to lessen the extent of the ‘us and them’ culture which often exists in the RC ranks. That is not to say that a non-racer cannot make a good official though. In fact I can think of several examples of where an official has never picked up a transmitter but done an excellent job of running a club or being part of a national committee. Impartial judgement that is not clouded by competitive urges can be a very good thing to have. So don’t allow a lack of prowess behind the sticks put you off coming forward to help!

 Mark Stiles

Chairman – BRCA 1/12 Electric Circuit Section 

1/12th Section 2015/2016 Committee Structure

The BRCA 1/12th Section is very fluid in how we operate to best fit the needs of the classes we support, early 2015 we create a “GT Subsection” to allow growth and a complete new national series dedicated to the GT Classes and F1. To continue that growth you will see from the chart below we have added some new roles to help build a strong GT Based committee to continue its growth. Once all of the primary roles have been filled we can then grow the committee into the Various Area Co-ordinators and rep roles. The LMP12 Side of the committee has remained nearly unchanged, with additions mainly for Media officers.

BRCA 12th Structure 2015-16

Section Chairman (Combined LMP & GT)

The chairman is ultimately responsible for ‘steering the ship’ and ensuring the whole committee functions properly. They are responsible for deciding upon the best and most effective direction for the section to take with its activities. As a section chairman you will also sit on the BRCA executive committee and represent your section in all matters that relate to and affect the BRCA as a whole. It’s an important job and usually determines the whole dynamic of the committee and the way it operates. The specific roles of a chairman are summarised as follows;

Away from national race events;

•      Liaising with trade and corporate sponsors and manufacturers on matters which affect the section.

•      Lead and manage discussions (usually via email) which relate to the section and its activities. Could be anything from “where shall we hold the winter national this year?” to “who’s bringing the cakes to the committee meeting this week?” and most stuff in between!

•      Arranging and chairing committee meetings as and when appropriate. Most sectional matters can be dealt with over the phone or via email, but sometimes it’s good to get everyone sat around a table to discuss things. Going through AGM proposals is a good example – most sections will call a committee meeting a couple of weeks before the AGM. Sometimes you can do a quick committee meeting at a national event, particularly if it involves something that requires immediate action.

•      Approving any official announcements and ensuring that they are published and circulated effectively.

•      Attending BRCA Sporting Exec committee meetings. There are 3 or 4 of these a year, usually in the Coventry area on a weekday evening. The attendees are the chairpeople of each section, the sporting committee chairman (John Russell) and someone who takes the minutes. Recent discussions have focused on the content and format of the BRCA handbook, national racing procedures in different sections and ideas for the way sections can improve the way they do things. It’s actually a great place to hear about and learn from other sections experiences and mistakes so that you don’t make them yourself.

At national race events;

•      Deliver a driver’s briefing and communicate any relevant official information to drivers

•      Ensure that the meeting runs to time and to the correct procedure. In essence the responsibility for actually doing this lies with the club/officials running the event, but it is your responsibility to ensure it is done properly.

•      Act as the BRCA Steward. This basically means that you have executive authority and may be faced with decisions to make at the event. Anything from deciding whether an official protest should be upheld, to calling off a meeting due to inclement weather conditions. If the steward is a racer and a decision has to be made which will directly affect them (for example a protest lodged against them) then the decision usually falls to the next ranking BRCA official present.

•      Assist with the presentation of awards at the end of the event

Secretary (Combined LMP & GT)

The secretary should act as an information and reference point for the other committee members. They deal with most of the sections administrative tasks that go on behind the scenes. The specific roles of a secretary are summarised as follows;

Away from national race events;

•      Deal with correspondence from external parties and direct it to the relevant person on the committee. This could be anything from an email asking for clarification about past practice or a

decision to someone wanting to know where they can find an updated set of rules.

•      Take minutes at all committee meetings and AGM’s and ensure they are published or circulated in good time following the meeting. 

•      Publish and distribute official documentation relating to the section. This could be anything from the updated rules following the AGM to information about camping at the forthcoming national event.

At national race events;

•      Not a lot really! In instances where the chairman is not present you may be required to fulfil his duties at a national meeting, but those occurrences tend to be quite rare.

Treasurer (Combined LMP & GT)

This is perhaps the easiest role to define, but also one of the most sensitive. The treasurer is responsible for managing and keeping records of the sections finances and dealing with all transactions in and out of the section account. The specific roles of a treasurer are summarised as follows;

Away from national race events;

•      Maintain up to date records of the section finances including inward and outgoing transactions/payments

•      Advise on the suitability of suggestions on how best to utilise section funds (e.g. for equipment purchases and PR/advertising expenditure).

•      Manage payments to clubs for hosting national meetings.

•      Deal with entry refund payments.

•      Manage general payments in and out of the section account.

•      Present the accounts at the section AGM and advise on whether entry fees and other payments should be changed.

At national race events;  

·         Not a lot really!

 GT Chairman (GT12, GT10, F1)

The chairman is ultimately responsible for ‘steering the ship’ and ensuring the whole committee functions properly. They are responsible for deciding upon the best and most effective direction for the GT section to take with its activities. It’s an important job and usually determines the whole dynamic of the committee and the way it operates. The specific roles of a chairman are summarised as follows;

Away from national race events;

•      Liaising with trade and corporate sponsors and manufacturers on matters which affect the section.

•      Lead and manage discussions (usually via email) which relate to the section and its activities. Could be anything from “where shall we hold the winter national this year?” to “who’s bringing the cakes to the committee meeting this week?” and most stuff in between!

•      Arranging and chairing committee meetings as and when appropriate. Most sectional matters can be dealt with over the phone or via email, but sometimes it’s good to get everyone sat around a table to discuss things. Going through AGM proposals is a good example – most sections will call a committee meeting a couple of weeks before the AGM. Sometimes you can do a quick committee meeting at a national event, particularly if it involves something that requires immediate action.

•      Approving any official announcements and ensuring that they are published and circulated effectively.

•      Attending BRCA Sporting Exec committee meetings. There are 3 or 4 of these a year, usually in the Coventry area on a weekday evening. The attendees are the chairpeople of each section, the sporting committee chairman (John Russell) and someone who takes the minutes. Recent discussions have focused on the content and format of the BRCA handbook, national racing procedures in different sections and ideas for the way sections can improve the way they do things. It’s actually a great place to hear about and learn from other sections experiences and mistakes so that you don’t make them yourself.

At national race events;

•      Deliver a driver’s briefing and communicate any relevant official information to drivers

•      Ensure that the meeting runs to time and to the correct procedure. In essence the responsibility for actually doing this lies with the club/officials running the event, but it is your responsibility to ensure it is done properly.

•      Act as the BRCA Steward. This basically means that you have executive authority and may be faced with decisions to make at the event. Anything from deciding whether an official protest should be upheld, to calling off a meeting due to inclement weather conditions. If the steward is a racer and a decision has to be made which will directly affect them (for example a protest lodged against them) then the decision usually falls to the next ranking BRCA official present. ?Assist with the presentation of awards at the end of the event

Qualifications Officer (LMP or GT)

The Qualifications officer role is so often a thankless task, but also one which is essential to the effective operation of the section.

Away from national race events;

•      Manage and administer entries for national events. This will include setting up the entry system, monitoring reserve entries and processing entry cancellations

•      Creation and publishing of race results and championship tables following national events

At national race events;

•      Management of the booking in procedure.

•      Running of race control and approval of all results before publishing.

•      Making official announcements over the PA system during the weekend.

Eligibility Officer (LMP or GT)

This is one for the technical bods out there! Not much in the way of management required, but you should have an eye for detail and be able to make logical and well informed decisions;

Away from national race events;

•      Maintain up to date construction rules for the class and publish details of any clarifications or technical announcements that are made.

•       Liaise with the Electric Board regarding homologation and use of electrical equipment

•      Liaise with manufacturers and distributors on matters regarding the approval and use of equipment

At national race events;

•      Ensure the scrutineering team provided by the host club have the equipment they need to do the job, have been briefed on the specifics and know what the rules and procedures are.

•      Assist with actually scrutineering the cars if necessary

•      Resolve disputes relating to the technical aspect of the cars

 

Media Team (Group)

Getting out what we do the outside world is one of the most important things for any section which is often over looked, Good media coverage creates a buzz and helps drive new entries. We have created 5 Roles, the Senior Media Co-Ordinator is the “Team Leader” of this group of officers.

The specific roles of a Senior Media Co-Ordinator are summarised as follows;

Away from national race events;

·         Compile press releases and circulate them to relevant parties.

•      Deal with incoming correspondence such as external enquiries about your section and events.

•      Manage production of PR material such as promotional videos, banners and documentation.

•      Liaise with the BRCA PRO (Alan Leighton) regarding your sections events and how your section might be able to support the excellent work Alan does on behalf of the BRCA.

The specific roles of a (GT or LMP) Media Officers are summarised as follows;

At national race events;

•      Arrange for someone (if it isn’t you!) to take some decent photos of the racing and event in general. A picture paints a thousand words – text only race reports are pretty boring. It’s your job to make sure everyone who wasn’t there wishes they were!

•      Try and keep track of developments and what’s going on during the race meeting. It makes writing a race report much easier.

 The specific roles of a (GT or LMP) Social Media Officers are summarised as follows;

Away from national race events;

•      Administer social media pages and forums for the section.

At national race events;

•      Update social media pages and forums with results (Each round is preferred), general pictures and snippets from the day

Safety Officer (GT or LMP)

The safety officer should ensure the safety of all competitors and officials at events sanctioned by the BRCA 1/12th section. This usually involves filling out a health and safety checklist prior to the event commencing and performing a basic risk assessment of the track and venue. Things such as ensuring that marshal posts are positioned safely around the track and not in dangerous positions and taking measures to prevent cars from leaving the track area are important things that the safety officer should take care of. Are there any trained medical professionals on-site? Is there a first aid kit? Are there adequate means of fire extinguishing available (including sand for LiPo fires)?

 Sporting Co-Ordinator (GT or LMP)

This is an all new role, it was something we tried with the GT Section in 2015 to great success. The Sporting Co-Ordinator will build strong link between racers, manufacturers and the other officials. The Sporting Co-Ordinator will help with matters involving rule clarification, interpretation and application as well as being a useful reference for the procedural side of things. As the name suggests we are looking for this person to help us with the “sporting side” of the decision process. This role is an advanced version of the old “Class Rep” or “Drivers Rep”.

Class Reps (GT12, GT10, F1)

This role is usually offered to the winner of the previous season’s national championship. They act as a point of contact for drivers at meetings and should be used to channel any concerns or grievances towards the committee. Given that the driver’s rep is usually a highly experienced and proficient competitor, they are also a good point of reference for any queries you might have about rules and technical procedures.

EFRA Rep (Combined LMP & GT)

Most sections have an EFRA rep if their class is also supported across Europe. The EFRA rep is the link between the EFRA electric track officials and the BRCA 1/12th section and manages all business relating to the UK’s involvement with EFRA sanctioned events. The specific roles of the EFRA rep are summarised as follows;

 

•      Relay of any EFRA correspondence to the rest of the committee and any drivers that it effects.

•      Attendance at the EFRA AGM (usually early November) on behalf of the BRCA and your section. If your section wishes to make any rule change proposals to EFRA then you should also compile these and liaise with the BRCA executive EFRA rep.

•      Assessment of the number of places required for UK drivers at the forthcoming European Championships. You should estimate how many places you think the BRCA will need and then submit a request to EFRA by the deadline.

•      Manage allocation of places to UK drivers for the EFAR European Championships. So if the UK are allocated five places, these are offered to the top-5 in last year’s championship first. Keep a record of any drivers who would like to go in case any entry re-allocations are offered

•      Management of entry fee payments from drivers who will be competing at the Euro’s. Liaison with the BRCA Treasurer (Jim Spencer) is usually involved.

 

Area Co-Ordinators (GT Only)

New Role: An Area Co-Ordinator will liaise with local clubs to create regional clubman events that are affiliated by the BRCA. This role is critical to the nationwide growth and support of the GT Classes.

Away from race events;

·         Liaise with clubs and potential national event hosts to formulate the calendar for the forthcoming season and make arrangements prior to the start of each event.

At race events;

•      Deliver a driver’s briefing and communicate any relevant official information to drivers

•      Ensure that the meeting runs to time and to the correct procedure. In essence the responsibility for actually doing this lies with the club/officials running the event, but it is your responsibility to ensure it is done properly.

•      Act as the BRCA Steward . This basically means that you have executive authority and may be faced with decisions to make at the event. Anything from deciding whether an official protest should be upheld, to calling off a meeting due to inclement weather conditions. If the steward is a racer and a decision has to be made which will directly affect them (for example a protest lodged against them) then the decision usually falls to the next ranking BRCA official present.

•      Assist with the presentation of awards at the end of the event

 

If you would like to help out or to find out more please contact;

Mark Stiles 12cchair@brca.org

Darren Newton Secretary@brca.org

This original document was written by Mark Stiles for the BRCA Touring Car Section, Modified for the 12th Section by Darren Newton

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