Wanted: Fuel Attendants

The last two columns have been all about the problems the Scottish now faces with regard to the withdrawal of the fuel supply service that the Army has provided for the past 16 years or so.

And this column, at least for the first few paragraphs, is to continue along this theme. More than 100 postings have been made over the past two weeks about this subject, and the recurring theme is that the tank capacity on modern machines needs to be increased to help overcome the problem. This may well be the case, for if a bike can carry five litres instead of three, then the number of fuel stops per day is reduced.

What this increased capacity doesn’t do however, is provide the actual service of refuelling bikes which is what is needed. Get that sorted and extra bike capacity may not be needed, especially as it is a significant problem to overcome unless you resort to extra containers bolted on everywhere. Nobody has seriously questioned the extra cost of providing a refuelling service and which will have to be funded out of an increased entry fee, but to date, the real problem is that there hasn’t been anybody who can say categorically that a particular company can provide the service.

It seems to me that the most likely scenario is for the club to take it up via a network of either paid or volunteered helpers. At first sight, the legal requirements look as if they could be overcome, whilst the logistics are determined by the legal requirements. Unfortunately, all this soul searching lands upon the club committee members and in particular clerk of the course Mark Whitham, and I rather suspect that they would love to have somebody get in touch with them and say “I’ll sort it out” or at least make a concentrated effort to find out what can and cannot be done.

Lots of postings have provided lots of ideas, now it needs somebody with the time and enthusiasm to collate it all and liase with Mark and his members. Who is up for the job?

There is little point here and now with me continuing with this thread, but do please continue to make postings on any of the three most recent columns, especially if you have come into this late and have the answer. They all get read and I’m certain that the answer is out there and somebody can provide it.

Briefly now, many will be aware that I broke down in Scotland when the fuel pump on my Transit Connect van gave up the ghost on Thursday morning which resulted in me and daughter being relayed home by the AA. I’m glad to say that I’m mobile again now, a lot poorer, and very thankful that I had AA Relay. Thanks for the good wishes.

It was my turn to observe again this past week with the opening round of my club’s evening series. I rarely ride these trials as what with taking the entries, then riding, then doing the results etc, it all takes up too much time. It’s much easier to observe for a couple of hours.

At least it would be if I paid attention! The trouble is, as most people know me, and I know most people in these trials, there’s a heck of a lot of chatter and banter on my section, with the result I forget the rider’s number, forget how many marks he lost and in a four lap trial, sometimes get the rider coming through five times, whilst number 46 is totally missed. Perhaps not quite accurate, but you get my meaning when I look at my observer’s card and wonder how I can’t manage to do the job as easily as I expect others to do it when I’m riding!