I’m one of those people who doesn’t compliment others enough. If somebody does a great job, I go home happy but rarely go out of my way to thank them. On the contrary, if I am not happy about something, I don’t hesitate to say what I think. There are times when I wish that I wasn’t quite so rash. When it comes to the officiating of kart races I have had my say on a couple of occasions when we haven’t had the rub of the green. I guess it is just one of those things; you expect decisions to even themselves out over the year although, eighteen months in, I reckon we’re still owed a couple!
We’ve been in the Clerk’s office twice and on each occasion Junior has found himself up against a fairly damning report that he felt was either inaccurate or incomplete. We were exonerated by the other driver in one and penalised in the other. Each time I’ve learnt from the experience. The first time I was livid (although stood in silence!) but learnt that you need to be able to leave things on the track (or in the office) and move on: there is no place for animosity in the paddock. My second experience taught me that the report is prey much gospel: if those few scribbled words single you out, there isn’t much that you can say that will clear your name. Our policy on contact is clear: if Junior was at fault for an incident he would apologise to the afflicted driver aer the race and, if we were summoned to the office, he’d put his hand up and take his punishment. It does suck when you feel wronged but, other than pencilling a short rant on a blog site, what can you do? I had been thinking about this aer our last race weekend where Junior was given a 5-place penalty for an incident he didn’t believe that he caused. It was the final straw of a prey dreadful weekend for us but is there anything that could have been done differently? I’m really not sure that there is.
The race meeting wouldn’t go ahead without officials, who turn up every month come rain or shine and do their bit for the club. Just like officials in other sports, they can only give what they see but, unlike other sports, they have to watch many competitors travelling at speed, centimetres from one another. Theirs really is a thankless task. As drivers/ parents we hope for consistency; in our recent case we’ll take the punishment on the chin and hope the officials continue their aempts to clamp down on incidents at the start. In a bid to further my appreciation of officials, I’ve decided to take a walk in their shoes and will be aending the Marshal Training Day at Whilton. I’m not sure I’ll be able to follow up with Race Observer training but it’s a start!