Officials & Marshals

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Every sporting event organised by the BARC Midlands Centre needs marshals and all marshals, whatever they are doing, are contributing to the success of the event and the smooth running of the organisation. Marshalling is a way in which enthusiasts can become actively involved, and contribute to the sport.

As a BARC Marshal you will be given training in all aspects of the Sport, from Fire Safety to correct Radio Operation and Team Working. Speciality fields are available in the Pit Lane, Rescue Units and other areas.

This section of the website is a comprehensive guide to marshalling.

What Is A Marshal?

Marshals enable the safe and efficient operation of motorsports events. As a Marshal, you will be given ample training in all aspects of the sport, from fire fighting and first aid to radio operation and team working. As well as working on Marshals posts around the track, speciality roles are available in the Pit Lane, Paddock and other areas.

Most UK Race Circuits and many of the hillclimb and sprint venues hold BARC meetings every year.

To start with you will be working with experienced Marshals who will provide 'on the job' training in addition to the formal training sessions held around the country.

How Do I Get Involved?

If you are interested in becoming a Marshal then email the BARC Officials Secretary, Paula Brown, on pbrown@barc.net or call her on 01264 882210 and she will be able to provide details of what you need to do next. If you are off to an event tomorrow then talk to one of the Marshals and they will be happy to talk to you about what they do and what's involved.

What Do I Need?

To start with you just need to wear natural fibres, cotton, wool, denim etc. that don't clash with the flag colours (yellow, red, green, blue), some stout footwear (walking boots are ideal) and some gloves (welders gauntlets or leather gardening gloves are fine). Don't spend lots of money on kit until you have spent a couple of days Marshalling to make sure you enjoy it (we are confident that you will), anything that you don't have can probably be borrowed, Marshals are a very friendly bunch.

Trainee Marshal

This is the level at which everybody starts marshalling. The grades are a way for other Marshals to gain an idea of your level of experience; they are not a reflection of your ability.

Upgrading from Trainee Marshal to Track Marshal requires you to have gained signatures for 15 days of track and flag duties plus one training day covering firefighting, flagging and basic marshalling, all of which are delivered at the BARC Marshals training days. Once you have completed this then you will be assessed by an Examining Post Chief over 2 days, one day for flagging and one day for incident duties. You will need to advise the BARC that you would like to be assessed so that they can notify the Chief Marshal for the event to make the arrangements for you. The assessments are in no way onerous and are intended to make sure that you are ready for the additional responsibility.

The assessment is an open discussion; it should be seen as a learning event with constructive criticisms being given during the day. These will ensure that you are ready for your upgrade and should round out the experience you have already gained.

Track Marshal

Track Marshals work in a team and are responsible for dealing with incidents, moving cars and ensuring that their 'sector' of the track is clear.

To upgrade from Track Marshal to Experienced Marshal you will need to have signatures from 20 days of marshalling doing both flag and track duties, each must be for a minimum of 5 days. In addition you must have attended two training days covering the firefighting, flagging, incident and first aid modules from the MSA grading scheme.

Once you have collected the required number of signatures for attendance and training then you will need to ask the BARC to arrange for an upgrading assessment. This will be held over 2 days to allow an Examining Post Chief to assess your flagging and incident handling skills.

Experienced Marshal

As an Experienced Marshal you will be taking the lead with incident handling and can expect to be mentoring other Marshals. Once graded as an Experienced Marshal you can choose an upgrading path, either becoming a Post Chief, an Incident Officer or a Flag Marshal.

If you would like to become a Post Chief then you will have to get 20 attendance signatures as Post Chief plus attending 2 training days where the firefighting, flag, Incident Officer, report writing, communication and leadership modules are included.

In order to upgrade to Incident Officer, you need to have 20 days as an IO signed off and will have attended a training day, which needs to include firefighting, Incident Officer, report writing, communication and leadership modules.

If you want to upgrade to Flag Marshal then you will need signatures for 15 days acting as a Flag Marshal and must have a training day signed off which must have included flagging, report writing and communication modules.

The BARC can arrange your assessment, just one day, but you will need to request it in advance so that you can be allocated to work with an Examining Post Chief.

Incident Officer

As an Incident Officer you will be leading teams of Marshals dealing with on-track incidents and will be responsible for coaching and developing their skills.

In order to upgrade to Post Chief, you will have to get 20 attendance signatures as Post Chief plus attending 2 training days where the firefighting, flag, Incident Officer, report writing, communication and leadership modules are included.

Your assessment will need to be arranged with the BARC as before.

Flag Marshal

Flag Marshals are responsible for communicating with drivers through the use of flag signals and signs. They also support the Post Chief by acting as additional eyes and ears.

In order to upgrade to Post Chief, you will have to get 20 attendance signatures as Post Chief plus attending 2 training days where the firefighting, flag, Incident Officer, report writing, communication and leadership modules are included.

Your assessment will need to be arranged with the BARC as before.

Post Chief

The Post Chief is the most senior marshal on any individual marshals post. They are responsible for managing their team and ensuring that they are prepared for the day ahead. This includes making sure that all members of the team know what they should be doing, how to do it safely, are comfortable in their role, or are properly supervised by a more experienced Marshal, and confirming that all of the equipment required for the day is available and in good order.

During track sessions, the Post Chief acts as an observer; they will report to race control things such as serious incidents, hazards and rule infringements.

Upgrades to Examining Post Chief require signatures for 20 days as Post Chief plus 2 training day signatures, which must include the self-assessment, leadership and mentoring modules.

An upgrade to Examining Post Chief requires that you are nominated by your club and must be approved by the MSA.

Examining Post Chief

Examining Post Chiefs perform the same duties as Post Chiefs and are additionally empowered to assess and approve upgrades for other Marshals.

Speed Events

Trainee Marshal

This is the level at which everybody starts marshalling. The grades are a way for other Marshals to gain an idea of your level of experience, they are not a reflection of your ability.

Upgrading from Trainee Marshal to Speed Marshal requires you to have gained signatures for 15 days of track and flag duties plus one training day covering firefighting, flagging and basic speed marshalling, all of which are delivered at the BARC Marshals training days. Once you have completed this then an Examining Speed Marshal will assess you. You will need to advise the BARC that you would like to be assessed so that they can notify the Chief Marshal for the event to make the arrangements for you. The assessment is intended to make sure that you are ready for the additional responsibility. The assessment is an open discussion; it should be seen as a learning event with constructive criticisms being given during the day. These will ensure that you are ready for your upgrade and should round out the experience you have already gained.

Speed Marshal

Speed Marshals work in a team and are responsible for dealing with incidents, moving cars and ensuring that their 'sector' of the track is clear.

To upgrade from Speed Marshal to Experienced Speed Marshal you will need to have signatures from 20 days of marshalling doing both flag and track duties, each must be for a minimum of 5 days. In addition you must have attended two speed training days covering the firefighting, flagging, incident and first aid modules from the MSA grading scheme.

Once you have collected the required number of signatures for attendance and training then you will need to ask the BARC to arrange for an upgrading assessment by an Examining Speed Marshal.

Experienced Speed Marshal

As an Experienced Speed Marshal you will be taking the lead with incident handling and can expect to be mentoring other Marshals.

If you would like to become a Speed Post Chief then you will have to get 20 attendance signatures as Speed Post Chief or deputy plus attending 2 training days where the report writing, communication and leadership modules are included.

The BARC can arrange your assessment, just one day, but you will need to request it in advance so that you can be allocated to work with an Examining Speed Marshal.

Speed Post Chief

The Speed Post Chief is the most senior marshal on any individual marshals post. They are responsible for managing their team and ensuring that they are prepared for the day ahead. This includes making sure that all members of the team know what they should be doing, how to do it safely, are comfortable in their role, or are properly supervised by a more experienced Marshal, and confirming that all of the equipment required for the day is available and in good order.

During track sessions, the Speed Post Chief acts as an observer; they will report to control things such as serious incidents, hazards and rule infringements.

Upgrades to Examining Speed Marshal require signatures for 20 days as Speed Post Chief plus 2 training day signatures, which must include the firefighting, report writing, self-assessment, leadership and mentoring modules.

An upgrade to Examining Speed Marshal requires that you are nominated by your club and must be approved by the MSA.

Examining Speed Marshal

Examining Speed Marshals perform the same duties as Speed Post Chiefs and are additionally empowered to assess and approve upgrades for other Speed Marshals.

Rescue & Medical

Doctors

All our race events need Doctors to provide the high level of emergency medical support that our competitors have come to expect.

We provide ongoing training and support to all of our team members to ensure that they do not find themselves in unfamiliar scenarios.

Any Doctors who are interested in joining our Medical team should email our Rescue Coordinator, Martin Hunt on rescue@barc.net in the first instance.

Paramedics

The BARC works with Paramedics as a key element of our Medical Team and provides exciting opportunities to attend some of the highest profile motorsport events in the world.

Once registered with the MSA, Paramedics benefit from medical malpractice insurance when working as a volunteer at an event.

Any Paramedics who are interested in joining our Medical team should email our Rescue Coordinator, Martin Hunt on rescue@barc.net in the first instance.

Rescue

The BARC operates nine Rescue Units around the country, which attend events of various types including races, sprints, hillclimbs and rallies. The purpose of a Rescue Unit is to get trained crewmembers and their equipment to the scene of an incident when called to assist. At a race circuit, this should be within 90 seconds of being dispatched.

Rescue crewmembers are Marshals who undergo training in medical skills, extrication and mechanical rescue.

They work with Doctors and Paramedics and use their knowledge and skills to extricate an injured or trapped driver.

The MSA requires that a Rescue Unit at a race meeting must have 3 licensed crew members and a Doctor or Paramedic. There can also be up to two trainees on the unit.

The BARC has minimum requirements for acceptance as a Rescue Trainee, these exceed the MSA minimum requirements and therefore you must have 2 years marshaling experience, have attended 2 Marshals training days including firefighting and preferably hold a valid first aid certificate.

If you meet the criteria and would like to become a Rescue Trainee then we will arrange for you to spend some time working on a Rescue Unit at events to see if you like it before committing to the large amount of time required to qualify.

If you are interested in joining BARC Rescue then please email our Rescue Coordinator, Martin Hunt on rescue@barc.net.

Non-Trackside

Marshals

Trainee Marshal

This is the level at which everybody starts marshalling. The grades are a way for other Marshals to gain an idea of your level of experience; they are not a reflection of your ability.

Upgrading from Trainee Marshal to Specialist Marshal requires you to have gained signatures for 15 days of marshalling of which 10 days need to be as a Specialist Marshal plus one training day covering specialist tasks, firefighting and basic marshalling, all of which are delivered at the BARC Marshals training days. Once you have completed this then an Examining Specialist will assess you. You will need to advise the BARC that you would like to be assessed so that they can notify the Chief Marshal for the event to make the arrangements for you. The assessments are in no way onerous and are intended to make sure that you are ready for the additional responsibility.

The assessment is an open discussion; it should be seen as a learning event with constructive criticisms being given during the day. These will ensure that you are ready for your upgrade and should round out the experience you have already gained.

Specialist Marshal

Specialist Marshals work in the areas of Pits, Paddock, Assembly Area and Startline and many Marshals split their time between Specialist and Track.

All of these areas involve a lot of contact with competitors, team members and the public. Specialist marshals will sometimes sign on at the same time as the other Marshals but usually earlier as they are involved with the earliest activities of the day.

The Paddock is where the competitors operate from between races; the Marshals must ensure that drivers and their cars reach the Assembly Area in good time. In the Assembly Area the Marshals will place the cars in the correct starting order, check the Scrutineering tickets and make sure that, before joining the track, drivers are correctly dressed and belted in to their car. Marshals in the Assembly Area may also have responsibility for assisting Scrutineers in Parc Ferme, which is where the cars go after their qualifying or race.

The Pitlane is a hazardous place during an event and Marshals here must be alert at all times. Pitlane Marshals are involved in activities such as recording pit stops, dealing with spills and incidents and operating speed guns.

Startline Marshals are principally responsible for making sure that competitors start from their correct grid position. They also deal with clearing the grid of non-competitors before races and provide warnings of stalled cars. They may also assist with lap charting and with penalty boards and flags.

To upgrade from Specialist Marshal to Experienced Specialist you will need to have signatures from 20 days of marshalling in your specialism. In addition you must have attended two training days covering the firefighting, first aid, specialism, report writing, communication and leadership modules from the MSA grading scheme.

Once you have collected the required number of signatures for attendance and training then you will need to ask the BARC to arrange for an upgrading assessment with an Examining Specialist.

Experienced Specialist

As an Experienced Specialist you will be taking the lead with tasks in your speciality and can expect to be mentoring other Marshals.

In order to upgrade to Examining Specialist you must collect 20 days signatures as Chief or Deputy Chief in your specialism together with attending two training days where MSA modules in report writing, communication, leadership and mentoring.

An upgrade to Examining Specialist requires that you are nominated by your club and must be approved by the MSA.

Examining Specialist

Examining Specialists perform the same duties as Experienced Specialists and are additionally empowered to assess and approve upgrades for other Specialist Marshals.

Other Officials

Clerk of the Course

The Clerk of the Course is the “ringmaster” who controls all aspects of the meeting from the moment that race entries start to arrive until the last result is finalised. At each meeting there will be a number of Clerks who are given responsibility for different aspects of the meeting from keeping to the timetable to taking action against drivers who break the MSA regulations. The Senior Clerk needs to ensure that everyone knows what their particular responsibilities are for the meeting and by doing so ensure that a fair and level playing field is provided for everyone who is taking part. A Clerk needs to have knowledge and understanding of the MSA regulations and this knowledge is then exhibited during a modular training programme which is usually complete in between 12 and 36 months.

Steward

The Stewards work as a panel of three with usually one appointed by the MSA, to be the chairman of the group with two appointed by the club to assist in undertaking certain responsibilities. Their main responsibility is in ensuring that the meeting is run as safely as possible and in accordance with the regulations laid down by the MSA. However in addition they act as a review body in the event that competitors are unhappy with a decision made by the Clerk. Stewards should have “extensive knowledge” of motor sport and like a Clerk undertake a modular training programme over a period of time before becoming an MSA Steward. Club stewards do not need to undertake the modular training but do need to have understanding of their role.

Scrutineer

Scrutineers are licensed MSA officials who attend all of our events and assist with the technical side of running the meetings.

The Scrutineers at each event examine every competing car for general safety, and also to make sure that the car complies with all the technical regulations of the race in which it will compete, and all the other technical requirements of the MSA Yearbook or the "Blue Book" as it is commonly called.

The driver's personal equipment (helmet and overalls etc.) are also examined to ensure that they are in good condition, and comply with the appropriate standards and regulations

Scrutineering has to be completed at every event before any competing car is allowed to commence practice.

If you are interested in becoming a member of our Scrutineering team, please contact our Officials Secretary, Paula Brown on pbrown@barc.net or call her on 01264 882210 and she will forward your details to our Chief Scrutineer for consideration.

Timekeeper

Timekeepers do exactly what their name suggests; they are licensed MSA officials who are required to keep full records of all the times achieved by the competitors during practice sessions, qualifying, heats and races. They use sophisticated electronic equipment to measure the times, including light beams, transponders and powerful computers. The times are compiled into results sheets, which are used to determine grid positions and race results.

If you are interested in becoming a member of a timekeeping team, , please contact our Officials Secretary, Paula Brown on pbrown@barc.net or call her on 01264 882210 and she will forward your details to a senior timekeeper for consideration.

MSA Grading Scheme

Training

Marshals Training

Each year the BARC runs training for Marshals at Croft, Harewood Hill, Mallory Park, Pembrey and Thruxton.

The training days include modules such as first aid, firefighting, incident handling, teamwork and flagging.

The 2014 training days are as follows:

Croft23rd FebruaryAll Grades
Harewood Hill9th MarchAll Grades
Mallory Park2nd MarchAll Grades
Pembrey9th MarchAll Grades
Thruxton15th MarchTrackside and Trainee Marshals
Thruxton16th MarchPost Chiefs, Specialist and Flag Marshals

Contact the BARC Officials Secretary, Paula Brown, on pbrown@barc.net or call her on 01264 882210 to book your space.

Rescue Training

The BARC organises training for Rescue crewmembers throughout the year at venues around the country. The training is run by MSA Rescue training instructors and includes medical, extrication and mechanical rescue elements.

If you are interested in attending Rescue training then please contact Martin Hunt on rescue@barc.net

Stamp Card Scheme

As a club the BARC have in place a “stamp scheme” which enables all marshals or officials to accumulate credit for the days they spend officiating at any BARC operated meeting regardless of whether they are a club member or not.

The club issues stamp cards to all marshals or officials at the beginning of each season, in one of two categories, either member or non-member. Marshals or officials are entitled to receive one stamp on their card on each day that they sign-on and officiate at a BARC organised event which runs under an MSA Permit. This might be organised by HQ or by one of the Centres and includes sprints and hill-climbs as well as race meetings.

Marshals do not receive stamps when attending events which are not organised under a BARC banner or which are not running under an MSA permit. So you would not be entitled for stamps at either the Rallye Sunseeker organised by the Southern Car Club or at Thruxton test days and BARC organised training days which are not run under an MSA permit.

Stamps are not issued to a marshal or official who receives assistance from the club for attending a meeting. This could include things such as a fuel contribution, hotel accommodation, daily subsistence or other such benefit.

Dinner Attendance

Having attended a number of meetings during the year a member marshal is entitled to attend one annual dinner each year, either a Centre event or the Annual Awards evening. Before claiming their ticket, to become entitled to attend a dinner organised by a Centre the marshal concerned must have a minimum of eight stamps upon their card and to attend the ‘Big Night Out’ Annual Awards evening must have a minimum of twelve stamps.

Redeeming Stamps:

At the end of each season the card should be submitted to the Officials Secretary, who will check that the date of each stamp agrees with the attendance record. Although the card has no direct monetary value it will then be given a nominal value according to the current scale, as determined by HQ in consultation with the Marshals Core Working Group, depending on how many stamps have been received during a season. The nominal value of the card can be used to:

  • Renew a club membership or to join the club if not a member
  • Purchase of club regalia or other clothing etc.
  • Purchase of marshals equipment sold through the club office

All BARC members have a number of discount benefits available to them that are outlined within the club magazine. However in addition BARC member marshals can claim a 12.5% discount on all ITMRS products and use their stamps to help pay for race school experiences operated at BARC venues. Members can also use stamps to purchase additional BARC dinner tickets for guests. Finally having eight stamps on their card, members will be entitled to claim an annual date bar.

Marshal's Draws

At every BARC run event a draw is held for the Marshals who attend. There are a number of cash prizes together with other items.

Every year the BARC has a Marshals draw at the end of the season in addition to those held at every event. A Marshal’s participation in the raffle is based on the number of days Marshalling they have done in the year; effectively a ticket is allocated for each day Marshalled; meaning that the more days you volunteer for, the more chances you have of winning. The 2013 prizes included a trip for two to Paris, various cash prizes, race school days, clothing and many other items.

Awards

The Sir Clive Bossom BARC Marshals Award

The Sir Clive Bossom BARC Marshals Award is presented at the BARC annual awards evening to the Marshal who has attended the most days marshalling during the preceding season. The winner receives the trophy and a cash prize whilst the runners-up receive cash prizes.

The BARC Marshal of the Year

The BARC Marshal of the Year award is presented to the most worthy recipient as judged by the BARC Marshals Core Working Group and nominated by the BARC Centres, Circuit Chief Marshals, Rescue Crew Chiefs and BARC HQ. The trophy is presented at the BARC annual awards evening.

Overseas

The BARC runs a number of training and race events overseas and our Marshals are key to these trips, having shown over the years that their knowledge, skills and experience are fundamental to the success of motorsport around the world from F1 to GT and endurance races taking place in mainland Europe and further afield including the Middle East.

Marshals Core Working Group

The BARC Marshals Core Working Group meets four times a year and is responsible for all marshalling matters including training themes, rewards and upgrading recommendations. The MCWG reports to the BARC Council (Board of Directors) and is chaired by Ian Watson, the BARC Business Development Manager who has the executive responsibility for the club’s Officials.

The members of the MCWG are:

Ian WatsonBARC Business Development Manager
Paula BrownBARC Officials Secretary
Trevor JacksonBARC Chief Marshal
Dorothy UwotaExamining Specialist and BTCC Chief Startline & Pits
Peter HarrisExamining Post Chief and BTCC Safety Car Observer
John FelixBARC Council
Nicholas PearceBARC Council
Martin HuntBARC Council

Dorothy and Peter are also responsible for the organisation of the programmes for the BARC Marshals training days around the country.

Insurance

The MSA provide insurance for all signed on officials and the following is taken from their website.

The duties of many officials take them close to the “scene of the action” and consequently into an area of relatively greater risk. Officials voluntarily carry out their duties and legally thereby accept the additional risk inherent in the duty which limits any remedy at law available to the official should injury occur.

Recognising this the MSA has effected personal accident insurance applying at events held under Permit or Certificate of Exemption.

Personal accident policies pay the pre-agreed levels of benefit to persons injured if an accident occurs within the terms and conditions of the policy.

All signed-on officials at events held under Permit or Certificate of Exemption, including set-up and dismantling. The signing-on of officials at events is extremely important in that one of the purposes of this is to identify a person as an official of the event and consequently establish the right to benefit under this personal accident policy. Cover for officials include traveling directly from home to an event and directly back home again from the event.

Trauma Counselling

Most of us will be aware that during recent years, there have been some serious accidents at Motor Sport venues where competitors, marshals or members of the public were seriously injured or killed.

As Organisers, the BARC wishes to learn as much as possible from these incidents, not only to minimise the risk of such things happening in the future, but also to have in place a set of procedures to effectively deal with the consequences.

However, the social climate today is much more developed, and physicians now have a far greater understanding of emotional trauma, the risks and consequences of exposure to serious accidents, and are now able to offer counselling and support to any affected person. They understand that, although people are often reluctant to reveal their true feelings, there exists a very great need for a distressed person to unburden himself or herself to a sympathetic listener.

It is now recognised that the very act of releasing ones emotions to a trained and sympathetic listener aids the healing process enormously.

In acknowledging that dealing with a serious incident can be disturbing for all those involved, including the marshals who are operating at the periphery of the incident (flagging etc.), it is important to recognise that all those exposed may well need emotional support. The doctors and paramedics who attend serious accidents have a vocational safety valve available to them; they can discuss the incident and its progress with their peers, and in this way dilute and balance the emotional stress they have experienced.

Marshals on the other hand, have no such safety net, and are often left with feelings of guilt and helplessness, which may linger for a considerable time, sometimes for many months. This can happen to anyone of us, is difficult to explain clinically, and should not be categorised as a sign of weakness in the affected person.

The BARC fully recognises the problems and dangers implicit in the exposure of its officials and marshals to serious incidents, and has engaged the services of a professional counselling company, who are full members of the British Association of Counselling, and the Association of Counselling at Work.

They have a fully operational 24-hour seven-day reception centre, and employ a large number of full-time telephone counsellers.

The objective of their service to the BARC is:

"To provide professional clinical support to any marshal or official experiencing distress, anxiety or trauma following a serious accident at any BARC organised event in the UK, and to ensure a focused referral to any other medical or clinical resources which are considered appropriate to the individual."

Everyone associated with the BARC earnestly hopes and prays that none of our marshals or officials will have the need to call upon this service, either this year, or indeed at any time in the future, but as we all know, motor sport can be dangerous, and nobody can guarantee safety.

Midlands Centre Office

Secretary

Noreen Ward
noreenward@tiscali.co.uk
Tel: 011455 824494

Chief Marshal

Fred Bromley
barcfb@googlemail.com
Tel: 01455 559277

Rescue Unit Co-Ordinator

Chris Hall
chris@stylehurst.net
Tel: 07973 622489

Marshal Availability

Each year, the BARC prepare a calendar of Competition Dates which is posted onto this website. All marshals on the BARC marshals register also receive a mail shot, detailing the calendar and providing a series of forms by which marshals can volunteer. In addition, marshals can access the BARC's online database, or download and return PDF forms (see below).

Whichever method you choose, we will enter the details into our database, and for those of you who are submitting paper forms, will send you a schedule before the season starts, confirming the dates you have volunteered for.

Please do not duplicate your volunteering as this causes administration problems.

BARC Speed Events Availability 2014 BARC Race Events Availability 2014