On this 60th anniversary of the Club’s founding I am sitting here to write in praise of yourself, your colleagues and everything you all do which enables the Sport we love to exist.
I don’t think that the majority of the general public who attend race meetings realise what a skilled and responsible job Marshalling is and what special qualities it calls for, let alone know what those people in orange overalls are up to. The race-going spectators are there to watch the action. What goes on behind the scenes is a mystery to them. They don’t know that you’re all volunteers, that you get there under your own steam and at your own expense, that you perform a multitude of essential functions and that, quite literally, without your enthusiasm, knowledge and expertise there wouldn’t be any racing for them to watch. But I know.
For some years I had the honour of being the Club’s President but there’s no point in accepting such a position without knowing what it is all about, so I applied myself to finding out. I attended training days, I put on the silver suit, dived into the fire and tried to put it out. I learned about the flags, I attended some Posts and I helped get a driver out of a simulated crash. I sat in at a medical session too but had to leave in a hurry feeling distinctly queasy when the lecturing doctor showed some grisly photos of what can happen, including a bloke unconscious in his car with his thigh bone sticking out of his leg (l was told he recovered OK).
So I salute you all and was quick to establish in my Formula One commentary days that there were British Marshals at so many of the foreign races I attended. At Monaco, at Spa and even at far off Australia. For the prowess of the BMMC and its members has resulted in it being the largest Marshalling organisation in the World with its teachings, methods and procedures making Motor Sport safer and more efficient all over the Globe.
Motor Sport Worldwide owes you so much and you can hold your heads up very proudly indeed. Well done each and every one of you and here’s to the next decade!