Firstly, for those we haven’t caught up with along the way, a warm welcome to 2020 to all Clubs, participants and highly valued officials and volunteers in our great sport. We have some important news to share, so settle in and get caught up.
Motorcycling Victoria ‘Changing of the Guard’
There have been some recent changes in the organisation. We should start from the top and acknowledge the work and contribution of our exiting President Richard Loft. Richard has made the decision to step back from the role of President as he approaches the second year of his second term in the role. Don’t worry, he has committed to sticking around in the role of Vice President to support in succession the incoming President, as voted after the AGM in July, and currently Acting President, Lauren Weaver (Loza as most of you know her).
The decision was not an easy one for Richard, but anyone who knows him, knows he has given himself wholeheartedly to this sport and community for several years. He has been a strong and dedicated leader and has worked tirelessly to guide the organisation. Richard was appointed at a difficult time for the not-for-profit sporting organisation and led the team to recovery from a financial and management perspective. It is time for him to take a break, as he moves into other ventures in his world.
Motorcycling Victoria Alliance Agreement / MA MV Forum Update
We’ve signed the Motorcycling Australia Alliance Agreement! It’s official.
After a long, and I think it’s fair to say arduous journey, Motorcycling Victoria are now officially a member of the MA Alliance and consequentially the Alliance Leadership Team (ALT).
To the life members and delegates who have been on this journey with us, keeping our clubs and members informed, we thank you for your participation in the extremely informative MV/Alliance forum held on Sunday 9th February, and record attendance at the subsequent General Meeting. It was indeed an opportunity to clarify information, clarify the role of the Alliance, and the key role Victoria will play on that team. It was also an opportunity to meet the ALT and get on the same page. The MV Board have agreed that Lauren Weaver will represent the organisation as the Victorian member. So far, it has been a very positive experience and we look forward to being part of the process for the decision making and action towards the future direction of our sport.
The concerns of Motorcycling Victoria’s Board and members to date have been addressed formally in a letter from the ALT. MV delegates and life members present at the recent GM advised they were satisfied member concerns have been addressed.
Some of our members have asked for further clarity around the role of the ALT in the administration of the aims of the sport. We have been able to source the following information and look forward to an exciting future.
What is the MA Alliance?
The following information can be found at https://www.ma.org.au/the-ma-alliance-explained-qa-part-1/
What’s in it for me? No doubt the first question you asked when the Motorcycling Australia (MA) Alliance Agreement (AA) was announced.
You, as members of MA are at the heart of the agreement. We aim to provide an economic and safe environment for participants and volunteers from all the various disciplines, whether you are a racer, a social rider, or even just an interested observer.
There are a lot of challenges and opportunities facing motorcycling in Australia – rising costs, more stringent safety requirements (higher insurance premiums), the lure of other activities (decreasing member base) and changing requirements of our riders – more ride parks, adventure riding, dirt bike rallies, ride days etc. These are real issues facing the sport which need to be faced as a cohesive team.
For quite some time all of the State Controlling Boards (SCBs) have thought long and hard about the most effective and efficient way to address these challenges and opportunities.
To retain the SCB’s autonomy (direct accountability to their members and securing their assets) while gaining the benefits of acting nationally – reduced duplication, standardising process and products, providing a national voice in support of the sport we love, the SCB’s and MA have agreed to form an Alliance where each member has an equal voice and commits to work together in a structured way to achieve what’s best for motorcycling.
There is no doubt that there is much work to be done to catch us up on great initiatives in Motorcycling across the country. As a member of the Alliance, MV will work towards strengthening our position as the most effective and efficient motorcycle sporting administrators in the nation.
The ALT is charged with tackling the big issues and challenges to our sport. Below is an example of one of the areas the ALT will work together to generate a national, and consistent approach to tackling risks and challenges.
Combating future challenges to the sport.
Unfortunately, our organisation is currently receiving some competition from a new company offering cheaper insurance for both riders and clubs. Our community isn’t a huge one and we value every one of our clubs, members and volunteers. We want to keep you all in our family and feel we can offer the best protection in what is a high-risk sport.
This competition is going to ultimately put a financial burden onto our loyal members. The costs to administer the sport are not reducing, but our pool of contributors is starting to. This is obviously not sustainable on a long-term basis. This issue impacts all states, at various levels.
As most of you know a percentage of fees collected from licensing, permit fees and rider levies goes towards funding our operations at MV. The rest is split up between MAIL the insurance arm that is owned by all of us, and Motorcycling Australia.
We all understand the importance of having a cheaper and easier pathway into our sport no matter what discipline and we are working hard to try and achieve this. MV have a passionate and dedicated team of staff who are committed to supporting you – from participant to technical expert/official. We are funded by our members and contributions through the State Government though various government programs and grants. The grants are often subject to strict regulation and can often not be guaranteed from year to year. Our members keep the sport alive.
MA currently invest over $200,000 sending and supporting our international teams overseas to compete in world championship events. A clear pathway for a first-time rider in a controlled safe environment all the way through to becoming a world champion is paramount to our organisation and the future of our sport.
We are the only group (SCB’s and MA) who can provide that pathway. Our strong community of clubs, members and participants look after each other.
We are the only group (SCB’s and MA) in the country who can provide top insurance cover, to make sure our riders are looked after in the unfortunate event of a serious incident.
The MV board’s focus will now turn to building the membership and participation base of our loyal clubs to try and ensure there viability into the future.
Below are some important points, important for all involved in the administration and event management of our sport across all disciplines. We feel this information is paramount to informing clubs who may be thinking of taking their business elsewhere.
INSURANCE – MAIL and MV
You may be aware in 2001/2002 there was an insurance crisis, particularly in relation to Public Liability insurance and premiums sky-rocketed to the extent sporting bodies were faced with premiums that were virtually unaffordable or insurance cover was simply unobtainable.
Fortunately, Motorcycling Australia and its state bodies were forward thinking and made the decision to set up its own insurance company to cover both Public Liability and Personal Accident insurance for participants and officials. Where an organisation sets up an insurance company to cover just its own risks it is called a Captive Insurer. Thus, MA Insurance Limited (MAIL) was formed. The company was registered in and operates from Douglas, Isle of Man. The Isle of Man was chosen because its government was very familiar with motorcycle sport, it had reasonable regulatory requirements and the location is close to the London insurance markets. A location close to London is important as it is a world leader with insurance. MAIL provides a cover totaling $50,000,000 and MAIL underwrites the first $2,000,000 of this risk and the remaining $48,000.000 is covered by several London based insurance underwriters.
Why have your own insurance company? There are several reasons;
- We know there is going to be insurance cover regardless of how difficult market conditions may become.
- The policies are specifically designed and worded to suit our sport. They are specific and direct and clear in their application.
- MAIL, in the interest of members, can consider claims that may be marginal or even rejected by a conventional insurer. However that should not be interpreted that we can become complacent or neglectful in relation to safety and good risk management practices.
MAIL has paid out over $26mil in insurance claims since its inception in 2003. We have attached the presentation that was included in the MV/Alliance forum held on 9th December. It contains the numbers and a financial breakdown of the level of support that has been provided across the county.
MAIL Presentation to MV meeting 9th Feb 2020 here: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1gUjJeqJh9Np6mA4E-5phyMnntwACPrS1
MV is part of a national federation, Motorcycling Australia to administer and control motorcycle sport in Australia. MA is the only body recognised by the federal government via Sport Australia. This federal recognition provides, among other things, funding to assist national teams competing overseas (Motocross of Nations, Australian Speedway Team, Trial of Nations, ISDE). Sport Australia provides invaluable advice to MA in relation to administrative advice and operational processes. The other Federation Internationale Motocyclisme (FIM), the international sporting body for motorcycling. Through this organization Australian participants can have the opportunities, should they wish, to participate internationally.
STATE GOVERNMENT RECOGNITION
MV is recognized through the Victorian Government as the body responsible for motorcycle sport in this state. The government over the years has provided considerable funding to MV and this relationship is paramount in the operations of MV.
WELL ESTABLISHED OPERATING SYSTEM
As part of the MA federation a democratic system of rules have been developed to ensure motorcycle sport operates in a well-structured and controlled environment that can support individuals and clubs etc. In those unfortunate times that serious incidents occur. We are dealing in a space that has a high element of danger and when something does go wrong there is the comfort of knowing the sport is based on sound processes – officials training and licensing, venue standards and licensing of venues. Whilst, at times, some of this may seem onerous it is a great comfort to know the sport is based on long established practices that have stood the test of time particularly when there is a police investigation into an accident or at the very worst an official has to attend a coronial inquiry. We hope that never happens but unfortunately it does.
CAREER PATH FOR PARTICIPANTS
MV, through its clubs, provides a career path for its participants with the opportunity for everyone to choose the level at which they want to participate – club level to state level to national level to world level. The opportunities are there for everybody to achieve their aspirations in motorcycle sport.
We welcome any feedback in relation to the topics discussed above. If you have any questions, please contact Robert.firstname.lastname@example.org and we will endeavour to provide clarity for any concerns.
Thanks for reading, and we hope this information has helped to give you all an understanding of the aim and benefits of being part of the MA Alliance community.