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Thread: FRA Members ratio in races

  1. #51
    Master Witton Park's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travs View Post
    I've personally got nothing against it, but i'm not so deeply involved in organising races etc as some on here.

    Without wanting to anger anybody on here, i personally support the idea in principle...

    I'll not comment further as this is the organisers section so i don't feel sufficiently qualified...!
    From an athletes perspective there are anomalies.

    I don't know the NI system as I've never run there and there's not clear info out there, but in Wales and Scotland if you are with a club, you register with Welsh Athletics and Scottish Athletics and can run in all disciplines as an affiliated registered runner.

    In England, you pay your EA fee but you will still have to pay an additional amount to run on the Fells either via the FRA membership or as an unaffiliated fell runner.

    The cover, rules, safety... are uniform as they flow from UKA.

    From a Race Organisers perspective, if you are a member of a club, in Scotland and Wales you can register your race with either Welsh Athletics or Scottish Athletics.

    In Wales the option to register through WFRA is an option for WFRA members.

    In Scotland you also have the option to register through SHR and I think also the SHGA is an option.

    In England, only the FRA can register fell races as things stand.

    I know some on here with FRA connections will think I have an ulterior motive as I was involved with issues 7 years ago, but those issues I had were around Safety Regs and the FRA actually moved towards the position I and others were advocating so I came back in to the FRA fold as a member and with my race.

    My concern is as one of a multi-discipline club, as a member of that club who has done as much as anyone in the club to promote fell running within the club and county for 15 years and have concerns that this will create schisms in the sport.

    This was initially flagged up as a safety issue and I doubted that based on the content of some of the communications sent out.

    It's clear now it can't be.

    An athlete will have to pay extra to run in a simple event such as Rivington, but will be able to run a NAV leg in a British Fell Relays without having to pay the FRA affiliation.
    Last edited by Witton Park; 25-05-2020 at 08:23 PM.
    Richard Taylor
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    Sid Waddell

  2. #52
    Grandmaster Stagger's Avatar
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    The idea sounds plausible, I would question why the biggest races in terms of numbers would be considered exempt.

    Charity, Gala and Fete races is self explanatory.

    But to exempt English champions races is a very strange concept.
    A quote,

    "The greatest accomplishment is not in never falling, but in rising again after you fall."

  3. #53
    Master Witton Park's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stagger View Post
    The idea sounds plausible, I would question why the biggest races in terms of numbers would be considered exempt.

    Charity, Gala and Fete races is self explanatory.

    But to exempt English champions races is a very strange concept.
    I think it's British Champs Trevor when in England, and probably to maintain a consistency of entry under UKA Rules across the 4 Home Nations.
    Richard Taylor
    "William Tell could take an apple off your head. Taylor could take out a processed pea."
    Sid Waddell

  4. #54
    Senior Member Charmian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witton Park View Post
    It seems it's happening then.

    I've also been taken off the RO's email list as I only receive info by the back door.

    I wonder what the criteria is for managing the RO's mailing list. It probably includes conformance
    Emails are ciculated to CURRENT organisers listed for FRA registered races, regardless of whether they made the cut off for the calendar. Race Organisers can change annually and so it is always the most up to date list which is used. The same criteria was used to invite race organisers to the regional RO roadshow in January where proposals were discussed in great detail and were supported almost unanimously.
    Charmian Heaton
    FRA Chairman
    Black Combe Runners

  5. #55
    Master Witton Park's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charmian View Post
    Emails are ciculated to CURRENT organisers listed for FRA registered races, regardless of whether they made the cut off for the calendar. Race Organisers can change annually and so it is always the most up to date list which is used. The same criteria was used to invite race organisers to the regional RO roadshow in January where proposals were discussed in great detail and were supported almost unanimously.
    So there's a system of cleaning up the list then? How's it work?
    Richard Taylor
    "William Tell could take an apple off your head. Taylor could take out a processed pea."
    Sid Waddell

  6. #56
    Senior Member Charmian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witton Park View Post
    So there's a system of cleaning up the list then? How's it work?
    It's a current list from the current database. Nothing is cleaned up and no contacts are removed.
    Charmian Heaton
    FRA Chairman
    Black Combe Runners

  7. #57
    Master Witton Park's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charmian View Post
    It's a current list from the current database. Nothing is cleaned up and no contacts are removed.
    There must be a process based on what you say, as I was on it, then I wasn't on it.
    Richard Taylor
    "William Tell could take an apple off your head. Taylor could take out a processed pea."
    Sid Waddell

  8. #58
    Master ba-ba's Avatar
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    I was on the list up until the FRA organiser meetings in Jan (i.e. last year's organiser list).
    Since those meetings I haven't received any RO blanket mail as I assume they have moved to this year's calendar list now.

    WP: regarding your earlier point, (post #51) isn't it true that the WFRA have surcharges for non-members (Travs will know more than me on this)

    As for the surcharge - it is my understanding there is no imposition of a specific amount imposed by the FRA. It is a suggestion that some organisers asked for and the FRA is allowing them to impose the surcharge if they wish - released a rule constricture from a while back. The extra funds will be allocated as per the individual organiser's discretion. Maybe this optionality could be more prominent in communication to the membership/general population?
    I find this flexibility more accommodating than e.g. the IMRA (blanket surcharge/no entry to non-members); the trail runner's association (blanket surcharge goes to the NGB) and even EA (blanket surcharge, goes to organisers for small races and NGB for large city races)

    As such, you don't have to add the surcharge to your race. At the organisers meeting I attended (in government approved County Durham) all organsiers were in agreement with the policy, with a few saying that for a few of their more 'entry level' events they won't add to their entry fee, for the reasons you state in promotion/easy entry to the sport.

    I understand some of the safety issues. However I (and it seems the committee itself) was surprised at the lack of knowledge of the FRA at many races - even big gnarly buggers like Trigger, lakeland classics.

    I feel that although the FRA has decent visibility and a wide armory of inititives to ensure racers are suitably experienced for the race of their choice (nav courses, entry vetting, safety rules on entry sheets), there is still some level of missunderstanding of the seriousness a fell race can unexpectedly take on. Some of the more recent initiatives - e.g. surcharge, membership stats - to 'advertise' the FRA and its safety requirements seem, to me, the use of nudge theory to increase FRA visibility and help get their message across better. Of course if everyone read the small print, was suitably grounded enough to know their limitations, what can go wrong in a race, we didn't have the litigious culture we now do , none of this would be required! Alas we do.

    Your point about the British relays Nav leg stands - however in the event rules it is up to club captains to ensure their runners are suitably experienced. Some of the things I have seen at Relays makes me question if even some club captains appreciate the inherent dangers in the sport and the importance of experience - sometimes it seems to some like a nice jolly, sold to probably unexperienced club members as a slightly tougher XC, to fill a team, and some competitors would be in serious trouble and without the requisite SMJ were the weather worse/there not a larger amount of people on the hill to follow than at many races.

    For the record, I am currently in contact with a few FRA committee members on other matters but am in no way a sock puppet. I have done a fair amount of internal grappling with a few initiatives/ideas and have come to the conclusion that there is often such a mine-field of stake-holders, ethos and keeping rules to a minimum in the manner the founding group of 1970 intended, that there is no nice and easy solution, nothing is quite as simple as it should be but at the same time nothing is as underhand or corrupt as you seem to think it is!
    Last edited by ba-ba; 27-05-2020 at 08:43 AM. Reason: extra paragraph
    Nic Barber. Downhill Dandy

  9. #59
    Quote Originally Posted by ba-ba View Post

    Your point about the British relays Nav leg stands - however in the event rules it is up to club captains to ensure their runners are suitably experienced. Some of the things I have seen at Relays makes me question if even some club captains appreciate the inherent dangers in the sport and the importance of experience - sometimes it seems to some like a nice jolly, sold to probably unexperienced club members as a slightly tougher XC, to fill a team, and some competitors would be in serious trouble and without the requisite SMJ were the weather worse/there not a larger amount of people on the hill to follow than at many races.
    Carol Matthews 1950-1991
    "...as dry as the Atacama desert".

  10. #60
    Senior Member FellJunior's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witton Park View Post
    There must be a process based on what you say, as I was on it, then I wasn't on it.
    Not all emails are delivered; some end up in spam folders, some are eventually returned by the protocol for various reasons e.g. recipient mailbox is full, some simply disappear. BT, Yahoo, Google have increasingly stringent but apparently inconsistent rules for vetting messages with the result of far too many false positives, i.e. rejections, which are never delivered. Similarly, they apply rules to filter mail servers from which they will accept messages. BT's customer forum has page upon page of complaints about non-delivery. Many messages are excluded for no reason other than another domain on the same server was deemed to have once sent spam. A message can be dumped for having too many recipients, on the basis it implies spam. I spent most of March setting up a stand alone mail server for a club to circumvent such problems due to the number of our emails, which were never delivered.
    So forget conspiracy theories, it's likely to be poorly implemented technology, out of the control of the FRA or you and me.
    Going downhill fast - until I fell over

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