Glen Helen and other tracks flagger incentive

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6/21/2018 8:30 PM

Just an idea I had, why doesn't Glen Helen get some old 250F's and some old or new donated riding gear and use them as a payment for flagging duties payment? Notch up a certain number of volunteer flagging hours and you earn an hour or whatever on one of the bikes. The last hour of the day is devoted to the flaggers and other beginners only.
I know before I got my first dirtbike I would have been happy to spend a weekend to get an hour. And these kids would be more enthusiastic at the job then someone who can ride the track already with their own bike.

Just a thought. Hash it out and flame away.

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6/22/2018 12:11 AM

If you want to send some cash for them to go buy some "old 250fs" and gear maybe they would do it.

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6/22/2018 2:42 AM

I think for most flaggers its just a quick way to make a few bucks and doubt most of them even want to ride but I could be wrong.

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Ed Johnson

6/22/2018 4:21 AM
Edited Date/Time: 6/22/2018 4:30 AM

lostboy819 wrote:

I think for most flaggers its just a quick way to make a few bucks and doubt most of them even want to ride but I could be ...more

Having worked at Perris/Pala for a bit over a year when I was 16 taking care of office and booth stuff, I can say very little of the flagging staff at either track rode. Most were just young kids who needed cash. I'd say 10% of the flagging staff between both tracks actually rode moto?

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6/22/2018 4:24 AM
Edited Date/Time: 6/22/2018 4:33 AM

ML512 wrote:

Having worked at Perris/Pala for a bit over a year when I was 16 taking care of office and booth stuff, I can say very little ...more

Drink

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6/22/2018 4:30 AM

lostboy819 wrote:

I think for most flaggers its just a quick way to make a few bucks and doubt most of them even want to ride but I could be ...more

ML512 wrote:

Having worked at Perris/Pala for a bit over a year when I was 16 taking care of office and booth stuff, I can say very little ...more

EZZA 95B wrote:

Drink

Fixed. laughing

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6/22/2018 4:33 AM

ML512 wrote:

Having worked at Perris/Pala for a bit over a year when I was 16 taking care of office and booth stuff, I can say very little ...more

EZZA 95B wrote:

Drink

ML512 wrote:

Fixed. laughing

Me too!w00t laughing

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6/22/2018 4:41 AM

Missed it. Shame

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6/22/2018 4:41 AM

It used to be a mission to get flaggers at club days when I was racing, and there were hundreds of fuggers! "If we don't get any flaggies weee're goin ome!" was the usual call after the midday break.

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6/22/2018 4:46 AM
Edited Date/Time: 6/22/2018 5:48 AM

Underground wrote:

Missed it. Shame

'I' took the piss for the way he wrote a word. laughing

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6/22/2018 6:22 AM

Be better off incentivizing them with crack

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6/22/2018 6:33 AM

After spending a majority of my life racing, I can say with utmost certainty that the only way to improve the flagging situation (where ever not just GH) is to put actual racers out there with the flags. People who do not race, the casual fans, and outsiders/outlayers will never be able to flag competently at a consistent level.

Ive also felt that flaggers should be trained, even if its just for 20-30 minutes the morning of the race. Its amazing how one short training session can help so much. People are often so benevolently blind to whats going on around them, its like watching deer in headlights.

I say this as having flagged pro level events all the way down to local amateur series. Most people just can't do the job.

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6/22/2018 7:01 AM

2stroked wrote:

After spending a majority of my life racing, I can say with utmost certainty that the only way to improve the flagging ...more



My experience with racers is that often they are the ones that pay the least attention to instructions and training because they think the know everything. There have been some exceptions, but that has been mostly my experience.

Being a racer does not automatically qualify someone to be a good flagger anymore than eating at a restraraunt means you can cook. Thinking you know what is wrong with the soup doesn't mean you can do it better.
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6/22/2018 7:16 AM

This isn't a GH story but due to the constant bagging (sometimes with reason) on flaggers just want to share something positive.

I was at Highpoint last weekend and standing along the fence right where Marchbanks went down. There was a flagger right at the top of that section and the instant Marchbanks crashed he ran down and started flagging as Marchbanks crawled off the track. Obviously everyones instincts is to watch and see how the downed rider is doing, but the flagger had the continued forsight to realize right away that the bike fliped and landed in a terrible blind spot as well. He looked back realized the track was clear, ran to the bike, and pushed it off the track right after Marchbanks scampered off the track. Making sure no one hit the downed rider or even the down and hidden bike. This situation could have been MUCH worse, but a flagger being on his game saved a lot of other riders. Anyways just a quick summary on a flagger doing good.

Now with that another quick story on racers not paying attention or ignoring flaggers.

It would have been the first 450 moto, some rider (sorry never got the name or number) went down in the corner before the uphill to the finish. A flagger got out to him, and was flagging riders to the outside as expected since the downed rider was pretty far inside. Well Musquin came down into that corner, got a little stood up and out of the line he wanted, then instead of taking some time, correcting his line, and going around the flag as he should he just threaded the needle and went right inbetween the downed rider and the flagger. And having seen the flaggers reaction he was not happy to dang near have his knees taken out as we was just trying to protect a downed rider. I think A Ray also did something very similar to Musquin in that spot as well.

Anyways, just 2 quick storys that sometimes flaggers really try, and sometime riders are still boneheads.

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6/22/2018 7:30 AM

2stroked wrote:

After spending a majority of my life racing, I can say with utmost certainty that the only way to improve the flagging ...more

JustMX wrote:

My experience with racers is that often they are the ones that pay the least attention to instructions and training because ...more

I’ll agree with you whole heartedly, our worst flaggers and track workers during my time at those tracks were riders. The ones that had little to no connection to the sport treated it more like a job and actually worked, not sat around and BS’d with buddies.

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6/22/2018 7:35 AM

2stroked wrote:

After spending a majority of my life racing, I can say with utmost certainty that the only way to improve the flagging ...more

JustMX wrote:

My experience with racers is that often they are the ones that pay the least attention to instructions and training because ...more

X2 Most riders think they are to "Core" to lower themselves to flagging. In the Late 70s at some tracks we the riders had to flag and the promoter said in the riders meeting. "the first time I see a flag with out someone in boots to wave it, the racing is over and no ones gets anything" and it worked pretty well.

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Ed Johnson

6/22/2018 7:39 AM

Everybody should volunteer to flag at one point or another. You'll have a new found appreciation. I was flagging on a big table and this kid on an 80 got a little out of shape on the landing and met terra firma right in the middle of the landing. In a split second, my immediate thought was to run down and help (spectator mode), but flagger mode kicked in and I ran to the front of the table waving the fllag like a mad man. Someone else could tend to him, didn't want him to get landed on.

This was an 80 Nov/Int moto with probably 20 entries, I could see how a 450 moto with a full gate ignoring flaggers would be very frustrating.

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6/22/2018 8:11 AM

In my spare time I might be interested in flagging, but I have no idea how I’d go about it.

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6/22/2018 10:28 AM

Pffft talking about Glen Helen like it's a problem. How dare you.

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6/22/2018 10:49 AM

What are these "flaggers" of which you speak? wassat

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Braaapin' aint easy.

6/22/2018 11:19 AM

Don't they need to actually have flaggers before they need to worry about paying them?



I have to give props to Milestone these days. Plenty of flaggers and they also have an onsite trained EMT at all times.

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"Who cares about what other people think"

6/22/2018 1:01 PM

2stroked wrote:

After spending a majority of my life racing, I can say with utmost certainty that the only way to improve the flagging ...more

JustMX wrote:

My experience with racers is that often they are the ones that pay the least attention to instructions and training because ...more
ML512 wrote:

I’ll agree with you whole heartedly, our worst flaggers and track workers during my time at those tracks were riders. The ones ...more

Interesting, maybe its racers from different backgrounds? Im an offroad guy. Offroaders volunteer a lot, as the overwhelming majority of off road races are put on by people who do race, or have raced. Especially in clubs. These are the die hard lovers who do it for free for the enjoyment and rarely if ever get paid.

Maybe in moto its different, and I'll admit my least experience racing is in moto. From what I've seen, when the people I know who race consistently and have been at it for years, flag a race they know where to stand, what to look out for, and have a better idea of what to anticipate happening.

What we think should be basic 101 stuff like flagging at a blind jump take off and not at the landing, staying off the race course, not crossing the race course during the race, and protecting downed/injured riders by directing race traffic around them, etc is often lost.

I only race moto in the summer to stay in shape (socal mx series), and the majority of people working those races are mc club members who "usually" have a clue and do a good job. When I flag I know I take it life and death serious. I bust my ass because I know that little yellow flag can be the difference between a tommy tip over and multiple trips to a hospital. Comes from having to go to the hospital due to bad flagging.

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6/22/2018 1:14 PM
Edited Date/Time: 6/22/2018 1:16 PM

Entry fee: $35 plus 30 minutes flagging OR $60 and no flagging.

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6/22/2018 2:36 PM
Edited Date/Time: 6/22/2018 2:37 PM

Insurance "recommends" flaggers for blind spots. Tracks have far too many blind spots IMO. More than a couple is too many. If you can see what's ahead, what good is a flagger going to do?

Also required are EMT's, Fire & Rescue, fencing spectators, track supervision and more as risk management.

Flagging is the hot item of the moment, but how many of these other items are being addressed, and can reasonably be expected to be with the type of money to work with in this sport for practice days?

You can't always blame someone else. How many people are warning of this bad situation?
Photo


If it's so important, why don't they do online posting of positions needed like auto racing. You can't expect people to just volunteer, or wander up. You could go get a truckload in front of Home Depot? Those guys want to work.

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6/22/2018 4:52 PM

2stroked wrote:

After spending a majority of my life racing, I can say with utmost certainty that the only way to improve the flagging ...more

JustMX wrote:

My experience with racers is that often they are the ones that pay the least attention to instructions and training because ...more

I think thats a bad example. The people eating at a restaurant are like the people watching on the fence, the racers are more similar to the chef or maybe the waiters.

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6/22/2018 6:15 PM

My friend and his dad run TheWick338 and have 100% volunteer flaggers at the pro National, Myself included. We all have racing experience and are involved in the sport.
No pay but our incentive is a free practice day and free food.

On regular race days(nesc,nemx etc) i believe its $100 for the day and many of the flaggers are locals looking to make easy cash. They do a good job.

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6/23/2018 10:01 AM

I'm a GNCC racer...have been for a number of years, and moto occasionally just for fun. I've flagged at the High Point pro national for the past 4 years. Flaggers at the High Point pro national do get a morning briefing/training from the track officials, and from the AMA referee, regarding what is required, what to do/what not to do, and when to do things. The flaggers in the headsets (wheels on the ground flaggers) also have a meeting the Friday before the race, where there is specific instruction given for those flaggers. As far as advertising, I don't know how they get most of the flaggers for High Point, but every year, they do ask the GNCC racers for help at the pro national. You either get paid or you get comps. So at least at High Point, it's not so random of a process. I can't speak as to how the other nationals do it...

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Many thanks to everyone helping me out this GNCC season: SRT Offroad, Acerbis, FCR Suspension, O'Neal Racing, Evans Waterless Coolants, Rekluse, Twin Air, Braking Brakes, Carbsport

Profile image credit Ken Hill Photography

6/23/2018 2:18 PM

I always wondered way they don’t use a local club like the Boy Scouts or some club from a Hight school? Put a litttle money into their club.

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6/23/2018 2:37 PM

Fog 25 wrote:

I always wondered way they don’t use a local club like the Boy Scouts or some club from a Hight school? Put a litttle money ...more

If they got hit, it would be an ugly situation

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