Organiser Info

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Organiser info

Quick ‘Organisers Guide’ to putting on a road race in West Midlands – 2022


The British Cycling website includes a comprehensive guide to running road races and other cycle events.—resources-0


What follows is a brief summary, but where in doubt please refer to the BC website.


To allow time for the race to be entered on the British Cycling website, to alert volunteers and give riders the chance to plan ahead, we would recommend a minimum of 120 days between deciding the date for a road race and putting the race on.


Once a date has been agreed for your race it is important to carry out the following steps as soon as possible.


1)  Confirm your choice of road race course. Send a ‘Strava’ link (make sure it is set to be shared publicly) or similar to BC West Midlands Regional Event Officer, Richard Wickenden on [email protected] – he will confirm whether it has been Risk Assessed and if not, will confirm whether it is viable to race on after he has consulted the local risk assessor and Manchester HQ. If it is not possible, he will propose previously accepted courses in the local area. Richard will also advise on possible clashes on the calendar and recommend a date which is free.


2)  Book a village hall (or other suitable facility) as close to the race course start/finish as possible to act as a race HQ. The Region REO should be able to advise on this, and there is also a list on the course register on this website. Make sure there is ample parking and communicate where you have booked to BC West Midlands REO, Richard Wickenden on [email protected] and BC West Midlands Regional Competition Administrator, Keith Evans on [email protected].


3)  Book medical cover.

British Cycling’s Medical Guidance notes can be found in this resource list—resources-0


The key paragraph states that road races require:

  • A qualified First Responder travelling in an independent vehicle behind the race, normally positioned behind the Chief commissaire, though the final positioning of this vehicle remains at the discretion of the Chief Commissaire.
  • Additionally, there is to be a qualified First aider located at a suitable agreed point (Race HQ, finish line) for participants who need attention outside of the race.
  • It is advisable to have further First Aid qualified personnel within the convoy to ensure the race is always covered should there be an incident.


In 2022 many West Midlands races are being covered by one of two providers: Garry Seabrook who can be contacted at [email protected] and David Lee of RAMS Adventures who can be contacted at [email protected]


4)  Enter the race as an event on the BC website – – Log in to the website with your username and password and make sure you have ‘Event Organiser’ as an option in one of the grey boxes (on the left hand side when you click ‘Dashboard’. If you don’t, call BC on 0161 274 2000 and ask to speak to the Events team or email [email protected].


Give them your membership number and explain you are organising a race and they will add the tab to your profile.


Click on ‘Event Organiser’ and in red boxes to the centre click on ‘Create New Event’. In the top section you can check for ‘Calendar Clashes’. Put in the HQ postcode, ‘Road and Track event’ (in the drop down) and the ‘Event Start date’ and it will tell you what else is on. Frankly it shouldn’t be a problem as your initial contact with the Regional Event Officer should have included a check that the date is ok.


On the same page, go to ‘Event Details’ and fill out the various boxes. It will look something like the image at the bottom of this document. Make sure you add a publicly viewable ‘strava’ link to the course in the ‘Event Overview’ tab – e.g. You are ‘marketing’ your event to riders and asking for a fairly sizeable entry fee so it is imperative you make it easy for the end user to gather the information they require prior to entering the event. The more informative you make it, the more entries you will receive!


Proceed to ‘Next step’ at the end of the page. Tick that you wish to use the BC online entry system, say ‘No’ to pre-entries being shown, say ‘yes’ to receiving and email alert for each entrant and select ‘Organiser accepts/rejects each rider’. Then select the relevant bank account for entries to be paid into and make sure that it says ‘Enter Online at British Cycling’ in the ‘cheques payable to’ box. Make sure your contact information is correct and display an email and mobile but hide your address.


Proceed to ‘Next Step’ at end of the page. If all looks in order, click the same button again. Click on ‘permit application’. This will download an online form. Make sure you download to your desktop and save it blank first. Start filling it in and save it regularly. If you don’t download and save first it might wipe the information! Once complete, return to the BC portal and ‘upload file’ where it is ‘choose files’.


Proceed to next step and pay the ‘registration fee’ online by entering the relevant bank details. Nothing will happen until you have done this!


Once you have paid BC, Keith Evans and Richard Wickenden will be made aware and will start checking over the information. You may need to go back into your organiser dashboard to change minor items. If all is in order the event will be ratified and ‘made live’ and it will appear on the BC events calendar for racers to enter.


5) At least a couple of months out from the race, go and inspect the course closely, ideally with a copy of the Risk Assessment to hand. Make sure you know where your start and finish will be located, and check parking at the HQ. Check for any dangerous potholes and contact the local Highways Authority to request that they fill them.


6) Book the NEG (motorbike outriders). The Course Risk Assement will normally advise how many, but it is usually a minimum of four. Email Bennett Wilkes on [email protected] – Please confirm your event date, send him the course location and he will confirm availability and approx. costings.


7)  Book Timing Chips – Simon Fielding at ‘Timing Solution’ covers most West Mids road races and is very good [email protected] – it is an additional expense, but it ensures all riders are categorised and given a time, and nowadays it will make your event look fairly unappealing if you don’t use them.


8)  Book ‘Accredited Marshals’ through regional coordinator Ian Bramble [email protected] . British Cycling have been very active in recruiting/training ‘Accredited Marshals’ who have the power to stop traffic. West Midlands Police will now not allow road races to take place without them, so although it has increased costs (the organiser pays their mileage) it has made racing safer and the organisers life easier as the regional coordinator will ensure that there are enough AM’s – the number required can be found on the Risk Assessment – and will appoint an AM Lead for your race to hand out signage / radios and ensure the marshals’ correct placement on the day. The Risk Assessment may advise that some ‘Red Flag Marshals’ are still required – this is summarised on the front cover.


9) Speak to volunteers early. Don’t feel you have to pin them down before deciding to organise the event. Every event I have organised tends to succeed on a ‘build it and they will come’ mantra. The first port of call should be riders from within your club or team who you know will be riding. As well as a certain number of Red Flag marshals, you will need to contact…


10)  Car Drivers – you need to organise approximately 5 car drivers (who all have to be BC members and over 21) so that you have enough cover during the race. Two will drive the Chief and Assistant Commissaire; two will act as ‘Lead Cars’; one may be required to drive your medical provider, and it is always worth having one in reserve. It is a straightforward job so long as the driver is familiar with the course – take them for a drive round it in advance so they don’t take wrong turns on race day.


It is also recommended for safety reasons that in each lead car you have one non-driving volunteer who can operate race radio to communicate with Accredited Marshals and commissaires. That leaves the driver to focus solely on driving.


Guidance for race convoy drivers can be found here


This should be given to all your drivers to read, no matter how experienced they are.


Prior to the event you will need to fill out (and send to BC) a car insurance form. This can be found on the ‘Event Organiser’ tab on your Dashboard under ‘Useful Resources’ and then ‘Road Events’ – ‘Event Vehicle Registration Form – Regional’. The NEG will complete their own form for you to send on. It must be sent at least 2 or 3 business days prior to the event to [email protected]


11) As entries accumulate, it is best to hold off on accepting riders until you have a good idea of numbers and you have passed the closing date. The reason is, once you accept riders you will receive their entry fee to the bank account in the weekly BC payment run. If they then withdraw, it will create more admin to refund them. If they withdraw after the closing date, you can exercise your discretion as to whether to refund them. I usually base this on a) how polite the request is b) how close it is to the event date and c) how good the excuse is!


12) The Chief Commissaire for your race should be in touch at least a couple of weeks in advance to check you are up to date with documentation, to discuss any specific safety points, and to discuss supply of radios and safety kit for the cars. At this point it is also a good idea to touch base with the NEG and Accredited Marshal coordinators to make sure they are good to go, and to discuss how the kit for the AMs will be transported to the race venue. The day before the race, you will need to put up safety signs around the course; the Risk Assessment will tell you how many you need; if your club does not own signs or you think you may be short, the REO Richard Wickenden can help out from the Region’s central supply. Putting the signs out is best done with two teams of two in two cars, using the Risk Assessment. If you, the organiser, are doing this, it is best done the evening before the race.


13)  On the day, make sure you have rider numbers, plenty of pins, signs for HQ, a ‘Finish Board’, 200m to go sign, lap counter, last lap bell, finish flag and hi viz vests (x 15) for various volunteers etc. I usually buy bits here: – bring it all in a big plastic container.


14) A day or two before race day, you will need to print out two copies of all attachments that Keith Evans will send you in advance (e.g. the Police Permit, Risk assessment, levy form etc) and bring them to the race. Bring sellotape and pens as you will also need to print out (separately and in A3) two copies of the sign on sheets. They will then need to be stuck to a table in the HQ so riders can sign on. Bring a plastic container to store race licences.


15) Also ensure that the Event HQ is well stocked with cake, tea, milk, coffee, water etc as volunteers, marshals and even riders will all be hungry. You can charge riders a reasonable figure for refreshments, but make sure anyone who volunteered or helped out, gets their refreshment FOC.



Good luck.


Thanks to Chris Pook for providing the original version of this document to the West Midlands Road Race Work Group.


Organiser support: quick guide to key contacts:

Regional event officer: Richard Wickenden [email protected]

British Cycling road racing manager: Kathryn McLelland [email protected]

NEG West Midlands: Ben Wilkes: [email protected]

Accredited Marshal coordinator: Ian Bramble [email protected]

WM Regional Board road racing lead: [email protected]



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