How to organise an Autotest

Before the Event

  • Ensure permits have been obtained by the Competition Secretary for the event to be organised
  • Ensure the relevant officials will be available on the day:
    • Clerk of the Course
    • Timekeeper/Timekeeper’s assistant to record times and penalties on timesheet
    • Judge of Fact
    • General marshal to oversee running of event/marshalling paddock etc.
  • Collect all necessary safety equipment, first aid kit, radios, stakes, tape and warning signs from storage
  • Ensure all paperwork is available – MSA permit, Competitors’ and Officials’ signing-on sheets, junior competitors consent forms, new membership forms, timesheets, MSA Blue Book extracts for Autotest regulations.
  • Ensure event is publicised on web site and club members informed on the Tuesday Club night before event runs.

During the Event

  • For Llandow events obtain gate key from farmhouse opposite Victoria Inn in Sigingstone village
  • Ensure the course is set out in accordance with current MSA Blue Book requirements (attached)
  • Arrive early enough to allow time to set up the course and carry out test runs
  • Ensure warning signs and red/white tape are in place to advise of paddock speed limits and ensure spectator safety
  • Ensure all paperwork is present (MSA permits, Competitors’ and Officials’ signing-on sheets, junior competitors’ consent forms, timesheets, new membership forms)
  • Ensure all safety equipment is present at the start line (fire extinguisher, first aid kit, warning signs, radios)
  • Allocate someone to conduct signing-on, collect entry fees and new membership fees (no fee = no run)
  • All members must present membership cards at signing on or a fine will be applied
  • All passengers must be club members and must also sign on
  • Guardians must sign for any Junior members participating, whether they are passengers or drivers
  • Ensure all vehicles entered are eligible to run in accordance with current MSA Blue Book regulations (attached)
  • Issue a driver’s briefing before the event starts and advise on the following:
    • No speeding in paddock
    • No litter to be left behind
    • Driving standards both at the event and when leaving the venue will be monitored as any nuisance or dangerous driving will reflect badly on the club
    • Advise that all club members are expected to set an example at all times to the junior members in terms of conduct and driving standards
    • No smoking in competing vehicles
    • Drivers and passengers are not permitted to consume alcohol prior to or during the event
    • Clearly state any penalties or special regulations to be applied for this event (e.g. wheels on the grass)
    • Identify all officials to the competitors
    • Walk the course and ensure all competitors are familiar with it
    • Make sure a course diagram is available to competitors
  • During the event ensure the allocated general marshal is keeping the flow of traffic to the start line constant to avoid delays
  • Ensure the course is clear of spectators and/or other competitors before allowing each car to start its run
  • Record all times and penalties accurately and clearly on the timesheet

After the Event

  • Ensure the course is fully dismantled and all equipment stored or collected for return
  • Ensure no litter is left behind
  • Remind all competitors to leave the venue quietly and safely with regard to other road users
  • If at Llandow lock the gate and ENSURE YOU PAY THE FARMER WHEN RETURNING THE KEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Any mishaps or accidents must be recorded and reported to the Competition Secretary who will file a report with the MSA if necessary.
  • Ensure all timesheets are complete and calculate result standings for the event
  • Send the results to the Webmaster for publication on the website
  • Make results available to members at the next Tuesday Club night
  • Complete the details on the MSA permits concerning number of competitors and calculate fees due to the MSA
  • Return all paperwork (permits, results, signing-on sheets) and all money collected to the Competition Secretary and/or Treasurer at earliest opportunity
  • Return all equipment to storage with John Bevan or Terry Donovan

How to organise a Navagational Scatter

This is only a quick guide to arranging a Nav Scatter. The definitive rules are contained in the blue book under section K 12 -13 if in doubt read the book, if in further doubt ask the comp sec and watch him read the book. A navigational scatter event is defined by the RACMSA blue book. This is just a short article to help you wade through some of the more technical stuff, but the definitive answer should always be the ” blue book”.


The first thing is to allow you self plenty of time, both in lead time up to the event and for the actual preparation of it. The bare minimum lead time that is needed is 5 weeks, this covers the time the RAC needs to grant the permit and time needed for the post office to deliver the permit to you the event cannot go ahead without you being in possession of the permit! Please do not listen to the “I always get a permit no problem, overnight normally” brigade; the RAC can and will issue permits in a shorter time, but in the past, we (BAC) were constantly asking for late permits and got handed a fine for doing so!!

If you want to collect points for organising and your competitors want to claim points for competing on your event the committee of the Club need to have approved the event 4 weeks before it runs and if you want any competitors at all, the event needs to be advertised!! So reasonably you need to allow yourself at least six weeks. Once the Committee has given you the OK (a mere formality, we always want organisers) get a cheque from the treasurer made out to the MSA, and a permit application form from the Competition Secretary.

Currently we are organising events of Clubman’s status, with members of two other Clubs being invited. These Clubs must be invited in writing, and you must receive conformation from them that they have accepted the invite. The form is a bit daunting but if you need advice ask the Competition Secretary (it’s the only time anyone talks to him!). When you get the permit back it will have stamped on it ” subject to approval of RLO” the Rally Liaison Officer. For this area is Alun Morgan. Send your list of control points to him and leave it a few days and then phone him to check that is ok. If you have followed the guidelines below there should be no problems, but if there is a control that the RLO wants moved or an extra black spot that he wants put in, his word is law!


Or in the case of a nav scatter lack of it! – The definition of a nav scatter is “Competitors should be requires to visit a number of points at random and no merit should be attached to visiting more than 75% of the points listed The majority of the points should not be readily accessible without leaving the car”. To get away from the onerous work of PRing the route you need to ensure that your control points (or anywhere that the competitors are required to stop) are a minimum of 500 metres away from a household. This sounds easy but South Wales IS a very crowed area, if you want to borrow the map from the Competition Secretary, he has marked most of the places that fill this requirement on the map. Just find as many points on the map as you think can be visited in “ample” time (the blue book).

Once you have decided the points you will use send them off straight away to the RLO. You must then decide how you are going to define your controls. The simplest and most common way is to use 6 or 8 figure map references, but you can use tulips, herringbones, circular herring bones, reversed herring bones, spot heights, clock faces & lots of other techniques. But all of the techniques above can only define a point, they must not be used to define a obligatory route as the RLO is only interested in the points you will visit so you can send your “route” (for want of a better word) off to him as soon as you decide which points will be visited or you can wait until you have sorted all your paperwork and clue sheets out and send him what the crews will have.

There are through out the country Black spots of PR sensitive people, in these you may not run a rally or you might have to restrict the event in some way. We are lucky that we only have one area around Blackmill. This square must be marked a s a black spot on all BAC events plus any other black spots that the RLO might decide at a later date.


You will need a minimum of three forms:
1. A signing on sheet, this has the requisite declaration for the crew to sign
2. An officials signing on sheet, at the very least you will have to sign this, and also any marshals that you use will also need to sign
3. A clue sheet for the crew of each car, this will tell them how many controls there are, the maximum number they have to collect, the time the have to do this in, the way to find the controls and any black spots.

The Competition Secretary has copies of all of these forms if you need them.


Make sure it is published!! Write an ad for the Club magazine, put up posters in likely spots (only put your Phone number down, not the start & time) put up a poster on the Club notice board, get all your paper work ready, if you are giving handouts, or panic envelopes it may be worth putting them all in an A4 envelope one for each crew. Try if possible to use a laser printer or photocopier for you paperwork, if you use a inkjet printer it is likely to run in the rain. Collect the code boards you will need, one for every control you intend to use plus one to show the crews at the start. You don’t have to use control boards you may want to use phone boxes, road signs, telegraph post numbers or any thing else you can think of to ensure that the crew has visited the control, but remember that if you want to keep you PR work down to the minimum you must make sure that there is no habitation within 500 metres. If you need control boards, ask the Competition Secretary but leave plenty of time and make sure he doesn’t see what numbers or letters you are using (he’s not above recording them).


Allow yourself plenty of time (at least 3 hrs) and ideally daylight. Put the boards as safely as possible on the points you have indicated on the map. Never compromise safety for accuracy, no matter how much the crews moan when they come back it is better to move the board 50 yards off plot than it is to expect a crew to stop on a crest or bend. The majority of points should not be readily accessible without leaving the car. So face the codes away from the car! Easy isn’t it?>/p>


As each crew arrives, ensure that their cars comply with the “spirit of the event” (no rally cars, road legal, etc.) and get them to sign on and pay for the event. Check their Club card, for the purpose of this event their Club card is their competition license; no card, no start. This is even more important if the event is run with invited Clubs make sure that either that your clock / watch is accurate to BBC time and inform each crew as they sign on of their start time. As each crew’s time to start arrives hand their pack to them, repeat another 11 times!!! After each crew has had their pack a few minutes, go to them all in turn and check that everything is OK. If all OK wait until approx. 15 minutes after first car was handed pack and either depart to pub, go to finish and wait or if you have a black spot or control to check, toddle off there.


Try to set the finish away from the Barley mow and make it a relaxed section. At the finish, collect the clue sheets from each crew; note their time of finishing and then when you have them all, or when the last crew would have been OTL, retreat to the Barley mow for results and well-earned refreshments.


Add all points for all crews; get someone else to check them. Announce the results. Write up results for the magazine editor, claim your organiser’s points and then don’t forget to collect the control boards for two reasons. One; to keep the countryside tidy, two; just to reassure yourself that the smart Alec who swore blind the board wasn’t there was wrong.

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