Watch Those Flags

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Track safety is always a big concern and there are many issues that affect track safety. The best thing you can do to help ensure your safety and the safety of other riders is to watch the flags. This week, we will be giving tips for riders on what each color flag means and what you have to do when you see one and we will also be giving some tips for flaggers so they are doing their jobs to the best of their ability.

For Riders

When you are out riding, either for the first time or the hundredth time, there is a lot on your mind. You are worried about lap time, holeshots, whoops, jumpsƒ??but donƒ??t forget to think about your safety. The flaggers are there to help keep you safe by watching the track and other riders and keeping you warned ahead of time.

As a rider, itƒ??s important to pay close attention to flag procedure in the riders meeting, because as of right now, each track may do it a bit differently. There are 6 different flags to watch for at the track and each one has a very specific meaning and things that need to be done if it is waved. These are the flags to watch for and what to do:

  • GREEN ƒ?” is presented to the riders at the end of the first lap of each moto. It signifies that everything went well at the starting line and the race is a go!

  • BLACK ƒ?” can be waved at any riders at anytime. It means that the riders to whom it is directed must stop racing immediately and report to a Referee at once.

  • YELLOW ƒ?” can be waved to any rider at anytime during a moto. It lets the riders there is some sort of danger on the track. If you see this flag, you cannot attempt to pass any other riders or attempt to jump. If you donƒ??t obey this rule, it could lead to your getting disqualified form the current moto or worse.

By now you have probably heard about the incident with James Stewart and Travis Preston at the Toronto Supercross. Stewart and Chad Reed came together on the face of the finish line jump, sending Stewart off the side of the track. Upon re-entering the track, he assumed that the yellow flag was out and being obeyed. Unfortunately, Preston doubled the finish line jump and collided with Stewart, leaving both riders upset and Stewart with a broken foot. By obeying the caution flags on the track and being aware of other riders on the track, the entire accident could have been avoided.

  • RED CROSS ƒ?” can be presented to any rider at any time during a moto. This flag means that there is medical assistance needed on the track. If you see this flag you must slow down, maintain your position and never attempt to pass or jump. If you violate this rule it could lead to your getting disqualified from the current moto or worse.

A good rule of thumb when the Red Cross (also known as the Medic flag) is out is no air under your tires. By staying on the ground, you can avoid a downed rider or medic as well as the riderƒ??s bike.

  • WHITE ƒ?” is a courtesy flag and can be waved to riders at the beginning of the last lap. It lets you know there is only one lap left in the moto.

  • CHECKERED ƒ?” is waved to let you know it is the end of the race.

By knowing what these flags mean and keeping your eyes open for them you are giving yourself a better chance to succeed in your race and stay safe while doing it.

For Flaggers

Flagging is a very serious responsibility. It is a job that requires concentration and patience. The time spent may get long and tedious, but the flagger must always be aware of their duties.

Good tracks will offer their flaggers a short learning seminar to teach them what to watch for, what flags to use and how to flag in a way that is common to most riders. This is a great tool for first timers and a great refresher if itƒ??s been awhile since youƒ??ve last volunteered. Even if you ride and are familiar with the flags when youƒ??re riding, the experience is different when youƒ??re the one watching the track.

Kevin McNiff of AM Motocross in Wisconsin is working to create a standardized video for all AMA sanctioned tracks. Kevin says, ƒ??Itƒ??s important for track owners to use a standardized flagging system. This keeps procedure consistent for both the flagger and the rider, and keeps on track medics and downed riders as safe as possible when on the track.ƒ?

Here are some basic tips to help flaggers. These may help make your job a little easier:

  • Stay at your post no matter what, until some sort of relief is available

  • Bring some sort of eye protection and possibly even ear protection

  • A large umbrella is a good idea for rain or sun

  • Keep some sort of cooler with beverages near you so you stay hydrated

  • Watch your part of the track

  • Keep an eye on both the riders who are coming and going

  • Try and watch the backs of the bikes as they leave your section until they are out of your sight

  • Point out the line riders should take if there has been a crash to help them avoid the area

  • Always stay alert and aware of your jobƒ??when flagging you canƒ??t enjoy the whole race

These are some things that should head you in the right direction. Riders are aware of what they are doing and what their bike is doing, but often times they forget the whole picture. A flagging experience is a good way to get in touch with the whole race and track experience.

In the end, we all just want a successful and safe day of practicing or racing. Keeping and eye on the flags or volunteering to flag are both great ways to contribute.

ƒ??EVS ƒ?” Winning with Safetyƒ?

WATCH THOSE FLAGS!


Track safety is always a big concern and there are many issues that affect track safety. The best thing you can do to help ensure your safety and the safety of other riders is to watch the flags. This week, we will be giving tips for riders on what each color flag means and what you have to do when you see one and we will also be giving some tips for flaggers so they are doing their jobs to the best of their ability.


For Riders

When you are out riding, either for the first time or the hundredth time, there is a lot on your mind. You are worried about lap time, holeshots, whoops, jumpsƒ??but donƒ??t forget to think about your safety. The flaggers are there to help keep you safe by watching the track and other riders and keeping you warned ahead of time.

As a rider, itƒ??s important to pay close attention to flag procedure in the riders meeting, because as of right now, each track may do it a bit differently. There are 6 different flags to watch for at the track and each one has a very specific meaning and things that need to be done if it is waved. These are the flags to watch for and what to do:

  • GREEN ƒ?” is presented to the riders at the end of the first lap of each moto. It signifies that everything went well at the starting line and the race is a go!

  • BLACK ƒ?” can be waved at any riders at anytime. It means that the riders to whom it is directed must stop racing immediately and report to a Referee at once.

  • YELLOW ƒ?” can be waved to any rider at anytime during a moto. It lets the riders there is some sort of danger on the track. If you see this flag, you cannot attempt to pass any other riders or attempt to jump. If you donƒ??t obey this rule, it could lead to your getting disqualified form the current moto or worse.

By now you have probably heard about the incident with James Stewart and Travis Preston at the Toronto Supercross. Stewart and Chad Reed came together on the face of the finish line jump, sending Stewart off the side of the track. Upon re-entering the track, he assumed that the yellow flag was out and being obeyed. Unfortunately, Preston doubled the finish line jump and collided with Stewart, leaving both riders upset and Stewart with a broken foot. By obeying the caution flags on the track and being aware of other riders on the track, the entire accident could have been avoided.

  • RED CROSS ƒ?” can be presented to any rider at any time during a moto. This flag means that there is medical assistance needed on the track. If you see this flag you must slow down, maintain your position and never attempt to pass or jump. If you violate this rule it could lead to your getting disqualified from the current moto or worse.

A good rule of thumb when the Red Cross (also known as the Medic flag) is out is no air under your tires. By staying on the ground, you can avoid a downed rider or medic as well as the riderƒ??s bike.

  • WHITE ƒ?” is a courtesy flag and can be waved to riders at the beginning of the last lap. It lets you know there is only one lap left in the moto.

  • CHECKERED ƒ?” is waved to let you know it is the end of the race.

By knowing what these flags mean and keeping your eyes open for them you are giving yourself a better chance to succeed in your race and stay safe while doing it.


For Flaggers

Flagging is a very serious responsibility. It is a job that requires concentration and patience. The time spent may get long and tedious, but the flagger must always be aware of their duties.

Good tracks will offer their flaggers a short learning seminar to teach them what to watch for, what flags to use and how to flag in a way that is common to most riders. This is a great tool for first timers and a great refresher if itƒ??s been awhile since youƒ??ve last volunteered. Even if you ride and are familiar with the flags when youƒ??re riding, the experience is different when youƒ??re the one watching the track.

Kevin McNiff of AM Motocross in Wisconsin is working to create a standardized video for all AMA sanctioned tracks. Kevin says, ƒ??Itƒ??s important for track owners to use a standardized flagging system. This keeps procedure consistent for both the flagger and the rider, and keeps on track medics and downed riders as safe as possible when on the track.ƒ?

Here are some basic tips to help flaggers. These may help make your job a little easier:

  • Stay at your post no matter what, until some sort of relief is available

  • Bring some sort of eye protection and possibly even ear protection

  • A large umbrella is a good idea for rain or sun

  • Keep some sort of cooler with beverages near you so you stay hydrated

  • Watch your part of the track

  • Keep an eye on both the riders who are coming and going

  • Try and watch the backs of the bikes as they leave your section until they are out of your sight

  • Point out the line riders should take if there has been a crash to help them avoid the area

  • Always stay alert and aware of your jobƒ??when flagging you canƒ??t enjoy the whole race

These are some things that should head you in the right direction. Riders are aware of what they are doing and what their bike is doing, but often times they forget the whole picture. A flagging experience is a good way to get in touch with the whole race and track experience.

In the end, we all just want a successful and safe day of practicing or racing. Keeping and eye on the flags or volunteering to flag are both great ways to contribute.

ƒ??EVS ƒ?” Winning with Safetyƒ?

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