Club News

Committee Meeting – Minutes

Committee Meeting – 10th August 2018

Regional debrief

Generally everyone thought the regional went really well (weather aside). It was noted there was really good team work, i.e. in the kitchens during times of high demand and when the track flooded during the heavy rain. It was not required to ask people to step up, volunteers recognised there was a problem. As a committee this is particularly satisfying and demonstrates our togetherness as a club.

Pretty much universal good feedback from the riders regarding the track upgrades, it’s nice to hear and helps to underpin the development plans we have in place for future changes.

Areas of opportunity included

  • The gate system; it’s doesn’t reflect well on the club that we had issues with the gate during the race. The heavy rain made the ‘loading in’ area very slippery and riders were complaining about a lack of traction when starting. There was also the issue in the finals where there was a pressure issue and the gate was not holding the weight of the riders.
  • Pens location. It was discussed that the pens are quite tight and congested. We agreed to look at other locations and an introduction of a possible holding area as per national racing to help ease the issue.
  • Pricing for food; general thinking was it was too cheap. Something to consider for next year.

2019 Development Plans

Discussed our plans for 2019. There was a universal support for the proposal to renew the whole gate system, renew the hill, which will result in the first straight being renewed.

  • Gate: There was a lengthy discussion around our gate and the regional, its lack of reliability and how riders feel it’s not quick enough and hinders their riding progression. We discussed the different options for renewal, looking at a Bensink pneumatic system and the ProStart Elec system. There are clear benefits to the elec system;
    • Removal of reliance on air and the issues we currently have with our current gate
    • The quietness of the ProStart system and the benefits this will have for our neighbours
    • The Prostart system is gain traction with other national tracks and this will help with rider progression
    • Reliance of riders adapting riding style to overcome issues with the gate, the Progate System will allow riders to feel more comfortable on quicker national gate systems
    • Progate system costs are comparable with others, but the quoted price is supply and fit, whereas others were just supply and we’d need to get additional contractors in to fit.
    • Auto cycle function, so club is not so reliant on volunteers to help to run gate sessions.
  • Start Hill: Discussions surrounding current start hill; general consensus was our current hill is not steep enough and too drawn out. There was discussions around it disadvantaging our riders when they travel to tracks with steeper hills and this is especially evident at national or international events. All agreed having a 5m UCI hill would be a fantastic addition to the facility and help with coaching opportunities. We looked at the site survey TDC provided and forming the hill would be fairly simple and require little if any building up. Material would need to be remove that could then be reused to rebuild the 1st straight.
  • First Straight: as with the start hill our current first straight is not challenging enough and disadvantages our riders when they travel to other tracks. The proposal would be to create 3 new jumps to challenge riders that conform to UCI regs.This would provide more and better opportunities for coaching. The Start hill and first straight plans are linked and both need to happen if we’re successful with planning and funding


  • Finances are stretched at present. Last years remodelling of the 2&3 straights and the tarmacing of the first berm as drained any reserves the club had and this hasn’t been helped by the electrics being condemned and the subsequent rewire. Regional income is also down, this is due to a number of factors:
    • Lower rider numbers across the board for all SW races.
    • Knock on effect lower numbers has on opportunities for clubs to raise revenue via food etc on race day
    • Race day revenue form region has decreased – introduction of British Cycling levies etc
    • Increased costs for parking field, food & drink purchasing
  • Discussions surrounding the split between what the region take on race revenue and what the club receives. General consensus was it seemed unfair that the region receive more race revenue than clubs – Will take this back to region.


  • General feeling this was working well. Rota is good and there seems to be a structure in place for when people can’t make their allocated slot. Will have to replace Nikki as it seems they are finishing BMX – RF go out to Facebook for another volunteer.
  • Discussion surrounding extending the current kitchen and having a serving hatch at the front to allow easy serving. This was universally agreed and we’ll look to program in some changes when finances / funding allow.
  • All agreed to make a push to make the kitchen as successful as it can be, it’s a good source of income for the club
  • Riders signing in – agreed to push ‘sign in’ again – It’s a requirement of our insurances! All agreed following discussion to introduce a ink stamp, all riders will be checked throughout the open sessions to ensure rider sign in is occuring. RF to order ink stamp

Winter Racing: Wild West winter series

  • RF – briefed committed and members on the idea of the Wild West series. Bideford will be one of 4 other clubs to have a around in the first year of the series


  • Universal approval for the idea of the winter series and in keeping racing going over the winter months.

Membership Secretary

  • Committee and club are committed to increasing members or just numbers of people using the facility.
  • Discussion surrounding BC’s roles and responsibilities in getting involved in this, apparently regional development role is changing and we will await the outcome of interviews before we start to engage.
  • Ski Martin floated the idea of hiring / purchasing a modular pump track to take to schools / fete’s / summer fares etc to help showcase BMX racing. Ski to contact manufacturer and Sam White to contact C&C workshops to find out rough costs. Will approach region / BC to discuss options for funding / partnership working on this idea
  • Re-promote grass roots sessions that were a success early in the year / Simon Harmer offered to help with some coaching which would be great
  • Discussions surrounding coaching – will push for volunteers on social media and those who’d like to get involved in helping with pushing members. Simon Harmer has kindly offered to get involved in coaching, will determine how shortly

First Aid

  • Many of first aiders need to renew. Gemma Penny is working Ian Wheeler to bottom when and where we could run a day course. RF to find out numbers on social media and Gemma to update on dates and costs.
  • Agreed to take off cost of first aid from next years membership cost to help with uptake.