Episode 46

How To: Become A Marshal

Even if you can’t race, doesn’t mean you can’t get involved in motorsport. In fact, here’s how you can land the most important role at a race meeting:

Motorsport is a love for many people, regardless of age, gender or any other discriminatory factor. On the other hand, due to the financial (and to a lesser extent health and fitness) constraints on participation, the demographic of the drivers – those who are actively involved in the action – is fairly non-diverse.

The problem with this viewpoint, however, is that you’re discarding arguably the most important participants. The people who, if we were without, motorsport wouldn’t occur. If you’re yet to figure out who we’re focusing this article on, it’s the orange-clad volunteers that make racing possible: our marshals.

Coming in all shapes and sizes, from a multitude of backgrounds, the brilliant thing about British motorsport marshals is that they’re selfless enough to do the vital jobs they do purely for the love of the sport. If you wish to get involved in motorsport but don’t want to or can’t drive, then marshalling is the job for you. After all, you get front-row seats to all of the action, and it’s a lot cheaper than participating too!

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Does this sound up your street? Then here’s the definitive guide about becoming a marshal:

When you become a marshal, the process is not too dissimilar to becoming a racing driver, in some senses. Initially, you should join a club based on your interests. For racing, that may be the BRSCC or BARC, whereas for marshalling there are two predominant clubs to choose from: the British Motorsports Marshals Club or the British Rally Marshals Club. Naturally, your choice between the two should be driven in whether you wish to volunteer for circuit racing (former) or rallying (latter).

For now, then, let’s focus on the BMMC. If you’re looking to get a taste of marshalling without a commitment, the BMMC run a ‘Try a Day as a Marshal’ scheme, where interested parties can experience the role before making a decision. To sign up for one of these, all you have to do is fill out a simple form on the BMMC website, and they’ll be in contact.

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For people ready to take the plunge instead, you need to visit the Motorsport UK website. Here you will find the application form to register as a marshal. Once you’re accepted, you’ll be given a whole host of training based on the role you pick, and then you’re good to go!

One of the great things about the fact this role is voluntary, is that there’s absolutely no commitment. There’s no set number of events or days you need to volunteer, meaning all the power is in your hands. If you choose to really dive into the job, though, you can really go places. British marshals are recognised as some of the highest trained, best marshals in the world, and many volunteers end up travelling abroad every year to marshal at some of the biggest motorsport events.

In short, then, volunteering at your local race track could literally take you places. A job with no required qualifications, and a motorsport role that doesn’t require a substantial budget to get started with. Sounds perfect, right? Maybe the most important person at a race meeting could be you.

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