Minutes of the SE Centre Trials Combine meeting 22nd February 2007



Present: Erith, Kent & Sussex, Sittingbourne, Streatham, Talmag, Sunbeam, Tenterden, Thames, Sidcup, Owls, Double Five, Centre Chairman. (11 clubs with 16 members present)

Chair: Jim Connor

Apologies for absence: Peter Burton.

Minutes of Last Meeting: Ok

Matters Arising: These were covered in the AGM that preceded this meeting.


Stewards Reports. Some background first; these reports used to be sent to the Gazette (now the TSM) for publication so that everyone could read them. There was the possibility for conflict between the Steward and the Club so this was discontinued. The reports are currently sent to management who only read out those that have cause for concern. The relevant combine would be unaware of a problem as this would be between the club, the steward and management leaving the potential for the problem to be repeated each year. We have been asked if we wish to read out these reports at our combine meetings.

Discussion ensued; stewards reporting style might alter if they were read out here, yes they should be read out, only the championship reports need be read out, only the problem ones to be read out.

Info; all the NKTC reports are read out after each trial, all Star group reports are read out. The ACU Chairman has proposed that the ACU head office will issue all permits (explanation of this followed) and if this occurs then all protests will be to them as the issuing authority, other combines are now realising the implications of this and permits will cost 45-50, think about how much we pay at present and how we aggregate and fund them in the centre via the levy currently 1.50, if this were to come about the decision making would be at Head Office and the Centre Management Committee would probably cease to exist.

Discussion; about info on insurance costs if centre went its own way and about the AMCA and how they run things.

No decision made on us reading out Stewards reports and Jim Parker the ACU Chairman is to be present at the Centre meeting in May at Blindley Heath to take comment from those present about how we want our sport to be run. We need to have a good attendance by clubs and delegates.


SE Centre Team Trial: at this annual event the teams consist of one Expert, one Intermediate and one Novice and as some of the riders compete almost exclusively in AMCA we have no idea if their entry in a team is at the correct ACU grade. Some clubs it would seem take advantage of this to the detriment of the whole event, last years Stewards report read out and details of a class split from AMCA. The AMCA do not seem to upgrade their riders and they stay in the same class year after year despite winning. In 2007 the organisers of the Team Trial will closely scrutinise the entries as they come in and refuse those if they feel they are not reflecting their true ACU level.


Any Other Urgent Business:

1.      Discussion on ACU grading at Centre trials, the Centre Recorder only gets sent results from championship rounds and has not had any requests from riders to downgrade. Some of our riders seem to be upgraded when they win and get stuck in a class that is too hard for them or stop entering, SE Centre rules do not allow riders to ride in a lower class for no award but have the provision to downgrade after 2 years if they win nothing, maybe riders are not aware of this rule. We also do not have a sportsman or veteran class or any age related classes.

Info: NKTC has Expert B and Intermediate B classes as a step up to the full class and this does not require any extra route marking.

2.      Stephen Ford has not yet received his award from 2003; centre recorder had not yet sorted it and will do so now.

3.      Examples of how some rider numbers had been issued at a recent centre trial were held up for us all to see, they had been written in biro! As some of us no more than ten feet away could not identify the number or the class, it is a disgrace that one of our clubs saw fit to issue them. In trying to identify the rider number and route, an observer was knocked over by the rider and it was only luck that there was no injury. This must never happen again. This example highlights exactly why the centre needs to move towards the production of a publication on the minimum standards that a club must reach if it is to be allowed to run a championship event.

4.      Correspondence received from Graham Tickner requesting that his son has his award presented to him rather than getting it in the post. Discussion. Different sports seem to do things in many different ways. Correspondence to be dealt with by Chairman and for 2007 award see item 5 below. 

5.      2005 awards were sent out in Jan 2006. 2006 awards on hold because of position on Expert points. Discussion. All awards except Expert are to be commissioned ASAP and a suggestion was to present them at next available championship round. For 2007 youth awards if we can get them produced soon after final round (Barham 25th Nov) in order to get them in time to one of their youth ceremonies in Jan 2008. the Enduro Combine make it clear which round they will present their awards and riders have to nominate someone to collect them on their behalf if they are unable to attend.

6.      Sittingbourne Pre-65 trial on 1st April missed the deadline for the TSM and will appear late but not have championship status. Discussion that as we are only human, on what sort of system could be put in place so that all info is, known at or by, the dates meeting and incorporate it into rule changes, to stop this happening again. Secretary to sort out a list to go to clubs with critical dates on them. Trials coming up, Normandy 25th Feb ok, Gravesend 18th Mar ok, Bexleyheath 15th Apr ok, Thames 28th May in hand ok.

7.      The ACU have the ability to remove points as per the ACU handbook.


There being no further business the meeting closed 22.15pm


The next meeting is on Thursday the 19th April 2007 at Blindley Heath starting 7.45pm


Any apologies for that meeting to Stephen Westley