THE MYSTERIES of marshalling were revealed on Sunday as part of a scheme to get more young people interested in joining the so-called Orange Army.
First along to sample the marshalling experience – not to mention the famous Jurby Airfield microclimate – was Carla Fargher who spent the day helping out at the Andreas club’s opening meeting of the year.
In fact she got more that she bargained for when a shortage of marshals on the day saw her in action from the outset.
Carla, who is 21 and lives in Ramsey, said she had a really enjoyable day.
‘In a way it was really quite relaxing – I enjoyed it,’ she said.
‘We had a chance to see things like riders’ sigining on and the scrutineers giving safety checks to the bikes. We visited the race control and the time keepers and got to see how all that works and we even went to the riders’ briefing before the races started.
‘It turned out they needed me straight away so I was positioned with some experienced marshals on the first corner after the start-finish straight.
‘Fortunately no one came off on our corner but it was really interesting watching the bikes and seeing how the different riders improved as the day went on.’
The sessions have been instigated by Andreas Racing Association secretary Mary-Rose Trainor, who was prompted to take action after a shortage of marshals saw the first MGP practice session severely curtailed last year.
‘Marshals are getting older, there are fewer young people coming in to it and we also rely heavily now on people who live off island so we really need to get some more people involved,’ she said.
Andreas club chairman Gordy Moore said: ‘We do get times when we are short and it is often running at the minimum manning level.
‘You get days when people are on holiday too, so it would be nice to have a bank of people we can call on.
‘When they are recruited, we can get them involved in the TT and the Manx Grand Prix. Marshals on average are getting older, but for the kids there’s so much for them to do now and those that might be interested seem to start racing earlier now too.’
The next meeting at Jurby is in mid-April and Carla said she definitely planned to be there again.
‘I loved it,’ she said. ‘As for anyone else who is thinking about it, I’d say just go for it. It’s a really nice community there. I want to do my bit for the TT and the MGP as well now.
‘You won’t be thrown in at the deep end. They will offer you a “taster” session so you can try it out and you can just opt to do what you are confident with – get involved as much or as little as you want.’
Anyone who is interested in taking part in a marshals’ taster session at Jurby should contact Mary-Rose on 264073 or email trainormaryrose(at)yahoo.com
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Weather for Isle of Man
Sunday 26 May 2013
Temperature: 10 C to 13 C
Wind Speed: 22 mph
Wind direction: South west
Temperature: 7 C to 11 C
Wind Speed: 28 mph
Wind direction: South