Running for president

Discussion in 'Racing at Mission' started by cookie, Oct 24, 2014.

  1. cookie

    cookie Two Smokin'

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    My name is Tony Cook and I'm running for president of our club.
    For those who don't know me, I've been around this club since the mid '80s as a fan and helping out a few friends who raced. Fast forward to the last few years and I'm still a fan, but I've also sponsored racers and the club and I worked in Tech. I'm 49 years old, married with 2 kids and own and operate my own construction company.

    If elected my plan is to help our club grow and prosper by going back to the basics and running things like a business. I would implement a computerized bookkeeping system that would allow us to provide the members with an income statement and balance sheet upon request, if the members want it we'll attach it to the minutes of every monthly meeting.

    I promise to run the clubs meetings in a proper manner. An agenda will be posted on the forum before every meeting. The minutes of the previous meeting will be read and discussed, moved and seconded. New business will be discussed and if a vote is required it will be tabled until the next month. This will go in the minutes and will be set in the following meetings agenda as old business so no one can ever worry that they didn't have a chance to discuss or vote on an issue important to them.

    I promise to be accountable to you the members. I will listen to your concerns and act on them. We are a small club and there is no reason not to be accommodating and inclusive. The president of this club is only a caretaker, operating the club on behalf of it's members.

    I want to return the club to it's roots as a social venue as well. Let's get back to having fun in the pits, lets get together for a barbeque the Saturday night of a double header, I want to have some organized fun together in the off season. We all love racing lets celebrate that.

    I have a plan that I believe can bring fans back through the gates, fans who pay to get in the door and contribute to the costs of running a race day so less of the burden falls on the racer. I have ideas I'd like to implement which will help racers control their costs making the commitment to a full season of racing more financially realistic for some people.

    Make no mistake, the road to prosperity for us is an uphill one, there are the sound level issues and the problem of getting good race dates. We compete now with track days down south. There is less sponsorship money, and less disposable income in the pockets of our members. These issues are universal, not just in racing but in the world in general, and they exist for whoever is on the executive of our club. I believe that my business experience and passion for racing give me the tools to help our club grow and thrive despite the problems we face.

    If you have any specific concerns please feel free to contact me.

    Thanks for taking the time to read this.

    Tony
     
  2. Marbod

    Marbod Rubbin's racin'

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    I will post one question to both people running for presidency this year. This one on this thread is for Tony, I will also post the same question to Scott in his.
    Both candidates are speaking of " plans for next year" that will improve the clubs fortunes. I would ask that both of you spell out what those plans are before the AGM so everyone has time to analyze those ideas and can make an informed decision and ask for clarification(s) before voting.

    Tony?
     
  3. cookie

    cookie Two Smokin'

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    Thanks for the question Marbod,

    I have plans and ideas but they aren't a magic bullet. Most are outlined in general terms above. In my mind club racing needs to be 3 things: local, fun and affordable

    Local? Well I don't just mean close by. Clearly Mission is the closest track for most people in southern BC. What I mean is that we need to be a viable alternative for those who choose to do most of their racing with WMRRA or OMRRA. We need those local racers to come race with us on non-conflict days. Whatever the reason we don't see them now and we need to open discussions and get them to come out if it's possible. Clearly if the issue is noise or something else beyond the club's control there is not much we can do.

    Fun? Well I don't know about anyone else but I find the vibe in the pits at mission to be pretty down. I propose to bring back the social aspect of the club, through barbeques, social events and other measures. I'd like to appoint a volunteer social coordinator to work with the exec on this. As a club of non Motogp racers there is no reason we shouldn't be having fun as a group and that can only help attract and retain new members.

    Affordable? this is the tough one. Club racing will always be a racer pays game. Finding and retaining more racers will help spread the fixed race day costs load among more people. I think the real key is bringing more paying fans through the door. Improving relationships with local dealerships and the rest of the motorcycle community is a good starting point. I would propose offering dealerships vendor space for free (with some special privilege to yourself and Blair in recognition of your long relationship with the club Marbod)so they will help promote our club in their stores. With more people coming through the gates our promotions department be able to sell actual value to potential sponsors. I would initiate discussions with professional promoters to work together with us to fill the stands.

    At the end of the day I'm about honesty and openness, creating, building relationships with past, present and future club members, vendors, sponsors and fans. Like I said, no magic bullets, just hard work and good decisions. We need more racers, and more non-racer revenue. The only way I know to go about this is to be open and honest, create relationships, make a fun and affordable place for people to race.
     
  4. cookie

    cookie Two Smokin'

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    I was asked in another thread how I would fix apathy. Who really cares? LOL

    First, we need to acknowledge that not all club members want or are able to have the same level of commitment to the club. That doesn't mean they are apathetic. There will always be a percentage of members who wish to have a greater involvement. As the clubs membership continues to drop it's only logical the number of people actively involved is also dropping.

    Being on facebook, the forums or attending meetings is not mandatory for the member at large and non involvement online is not really a problem as far as I am concerned. Not being on the internet does not make one apathetic.
    The problem in my opinion is the disconnect between the average racer and the club itself. Look at our novices the last few years, they come to the track, no-one really talks to them, they get some track time, sit around a whole bunch, get told to help move hay bails and leave. I can't help but think that they drive away saying to themselves :” well, that was like a track day only worse – I got fewer laps, paid more money, and had to work to boot”. If we as a club fear the competition coming from track days we have only ourselves to blame. We need to engage our members, make them part of a club, let them feel like something more than customers paying for track time.

    The only answer I know for this is communication. The membership needs to feel engaged and involved. When questions are asked on the forum there needs to be a response. A rule question needs an official response from the rulebook committee, a question to an executive deserves a reply. Simple stuff, but really important.

    As an aside, and related to what Dean mentioned on the other thread, I asked about the use of social media a couple of years ago and the answer still stands true I believe:
    Facebook should be used for what it was designed for: Social interaction between members, announcements for club or other events, pictures of projects, pretty much everything and anything bike related. People on the Facebook group are friends of the club, and probably don't care as much about club business as regular members.
    The forums should be the official place to discuss any business related to the club, where you post questions and get answers relating to licensing, registration, operations, rules, technical advice etc etc etc. If you don't want to be online then your next best bet will be a club meeting. What if you're not in the lower mainland? Then there needs to be a way for you to contact someone, and you deserve a response. E-mail addresses for the exec need to be accessible to members too.

    In 2014 with all the conflicting demands on our time members need multiple ways to communicate with and feel connected to the club. People today are accustomed to instant responses and unfortunately “bring it to the next meeting” isn't a realistic answer to many anymore.
     
  5. Ryan Whittle

    Ryan Whittle Rider of Orange V-Twins

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    Very well said Tony. It really seems like you get it.
     
  6. tt600

    tt600 New Member

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    right on brah!
     
  7. StevieMac

    StevieMac New Member

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    Interesting. I’m one of those novices and that hasn’t been my experience. Lots of people have talked to me and helped me through my first couple of seasons and I am FAR from outgoing or social by nature.

    I keep hearing about the unfriendliness in the pits but I just don’t see it. I wasn’t expecting a gift basket and some sort of glorious welcome just for showing up. Like everything, it is what you make it. If it’s not social enough for your liking go talk to more people.

    One suggestion (which is probably not a new idea) is that if someone is attending their first race weekend perhaps we can try to pair them up with a more experienced racer that can help them out with any questions they might have and maybe walk them around the pits and introduce them around a bit etc. I’m certainly not putting myself in the experienced category but I’m capable of helping a brand new racer find their way through a race weekend at Mission. So feel free to send any new 250 racers my way anytime.

    As for hay bales, I understand that it’s a hell of a lot of work to put on a race weekend and it’s being done by a pretty small group of people, so if I want to race I expect to share some of that work load.
     
  8. Dean Thompson

    Dean Thompson New Member

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    On sale now!: 41aOQH42kiL.jpg
     
  9. cookie

    cookie Two Smokin'

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    I haven't replied here in a while, and first I'd like to say that I'm glad StevieMac's experience as a novice with our club has been a positive one!
    I'd also like to reply to something Bernie said in the other thread regarding reporting. Don't get me wrong, I don't advocate that the membership should vote on every issue, the executive would never be able to function were that the case. I do believe that communication and transparency are of paramount importance in a club such as ours.
    I'd like to use the recent adoption of the weekend license as an example of how I would propose things be handled slightly differently. Going back I see that Dean Thompson asked about the ongoing question of the weekend license on August 14th. In fairly short order Dean Drolet replied that he could buy one and by Sept 8th it was a done deal. That was also the date of the September general meeting. All that is good, but In my opinion the issue of licenses should have been brought up at the meeting as new business, no need for much discussion, just the details announced and the whole thing entered in the minutes of the meeting. No vote required.
    Possibly if this change had been announced formally more than 1 weekend license would have been sold for the September rounds?
     
  10. Dean Thompson

    Dean Thompson New Member

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    That's the most important aspect of any volunteer based club. The motocross club I belong to is on the verge of collapse due to ineffective communication within the executive, not to mention the members. Communication must be frequent and detailed, especially within the executive, and not just during the 1 hour per month meetings: frequently. Or things get overlooked, backburnered, forgotten, etc. Then morale of the membership weakens. Then......a zombie apocalypse! Or members go to other race organizations. One of those two things is bound to happen.
     
  11. Bernie

    Bernie Ranter Extrodinaire

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    No worries Tony, I wasn't posting about anything you have said. It was directed at some criticisms about current events and execs, although I will stand by what I said.
     
  12. cookie

    cookie Two Smokin'

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    If anyone has any questions I'm happy to answer them here or you can e-mail me at dcracing (at) live.ca

    Otherwise I look forward to seeing you all at the AGM monday night!
     
  13. Dean Thompson

    Dean Thompson New Member

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    Sorry if I offend anyone, but he left the door open for my trolling, so I had to post this: 549718_450536521657562_836269145_n.jpg
     
  14. Marbod

    Marbod Rubbin's racin'

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    When did you become a reporter, Dean? You're looking comfortable with that microphone, maybe you should do some announcing next year?
     
  15. Dean Thompson

    Dean Thompson New Member

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    Don't push your luck! 7115_884145598285055_3182950896280581551_n.jpg
     
  16. cookie

    cookie Two Smokin'

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    Despite what some of you have heard I am a very honest, straightforward person. I do not like to play games and to be truthful I'm not very good at it. Hell, I can barely keep a secret.

    Somehow the fact that some friends and I had spoken about our mutual concerns for the club's future made us villains. I tried to mitigate this by going public with my intention to run for office. I wanted to play fair, I didn't lie or cheat. I tried to run a positive campaign about the issues as I see them, up front where all our members could see it.

    I'm a strong minded guy with integrity and a belief that I am running for the right reasons. I was quite surprised to see Andrew's post declaring his candidacy with a platform very similar to mine, so I called Andrew and we talked. I'm going to give some highlights here, and let you all connect the dots, see if you get the same picture I do.

    First the main difference in our platforms is his belief in the small capacity bikes being the future of the club. I personally don't agree but have also never been asked to address the issue publicly. For the record I would welcome the small bore bikes to our club and would be happy to be proven wrong should they be a success. I suggested to Andrew that he had originally planned to run as VP and that would be a perfect place from which to work towards getting the small bore bikes to run with the club. He responded that I(Tony) as president would not have the support of the PCMRC executive. I was confused and tried to clarify, I asked him if he was suggesting that even if the two clubs working closer together would be beneficial to both clubs it would not happen were I president and he agreed that was what he was saying

    His second concern was that we would lose volunteers were I to be elected I'm sure some of the newer volunteers might leave but I have people in place willing to fill those roles. He also said we would lose our web hosting. Ok, not that big a deal, I could probably host the club's site where my company site is.

    His third concern was that we would lose the gold cup. Possibly this is true, I would hope that saner heads would prevail. If that threat were to come through I would certainly speak with Honda and Kawasaki Canada to see if they would be happy their championship would be contested only on two go-kart tracks.

    Seems to be each of these concerns is just another case of fear mongering and people threatening to take their ball and go home. Should we as a club be held hostage like this? Are we not able as a group to make decisions without being influenced by individuals looking out for their own self interest rather than the good of our club?

    I ask the members of our club this: are you comfortable with your club being run this way? I'll happily withdraw if you as a collective feel my candidacy in any way hurts the club, PM me your answers if you'd rather not post publicly please. I know this is a pretty nasty post, and it feels crappy to write it, but it would feel worse knowing this and not sharing it with the members. I only know one way to approach things, and that is head on.



    Thanks for taking the time to read this.
     

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