LETTERS: Re-appointed Chairman Elliott’s open letter to Cycle Speedway
Graham Elliott has been invited to continue his role as Cycle Speedway Commission chairman by British Cycling, despite not being re-elected to the board. This is a first since the Cycle Speedway joined up with British Cycling and will hopefully offer consistency at the top of the sport.
Graham has written to us with an open letter to the Cycle Speedway community and talks about the “thorny” issue of discipline.
Open letter to whom it may concern,
Firstly may I just say how delighted I am to have been invited by British Cycling to continue in my role as Chairman of the Cycle Speedway Commission for a second year, despite not being elected back to the BC board. It is my intention for the main emphasis of 2015 to be to help to move the sport on from its current difficulties.
I approached the first meeting of the Commission since my re-appointment with a certain amount of apprehension in view of various developments during the off-season. So it is all the more satisfying to report that the closing remarks from everyone around the table confirmed my view that this had been the most productive and forward looking meeting for quite some time. Routine business was transacted in double quick time in order to devote full attention to three key areas, namely Development, Governance and Discipline.
More will unfold on the first two in the coming weeks and months but it is the thorny problem of discipline that I would like to address here and now in view of the rapidly approaching season. Paul West has already circulated a clear message from the Commission on the subject, primarily at the moment aimed at team managers. This was reproduced on “33/18” a couple of weeks ago. Let me add to that by repeating the obvious message that the sport risks destroying itself from within unless it can get its house in order.
It was a great disappointment for me on my return to the sport to see how many events were permeated with abuse of officials in 2014. For this reason it was all the more encouraging to hear the strength of resolve in the Commission to change this culture as a matter of the utmost priority. Personally, I applaud the courage and far sightedness in taking that step.
Cycle Speedway is a great sport with huge potential, but it can benefit greatly in so many ways from getting its own house in order. It really is time that we began to aspire to the highest standards as opposed to allowing things to drift toward the lowest. So I would like to invite everyone with an interest in Cycle Speedway to focus 2015 on being the best that we can be in all things, starting with our behaviour.
Finally, I did take the step of setting up a public email address available to all in the sport as a point of contact should anyone want to communicate directly with me. It’s still there and still available at firstname.lastname@example.org. I did this because I am not one for hiding away from criticism or interrogation of what I am doing. I will wherever possible answer any reasonable question, and if I can’t I will tell you why I can’t.
All the best