From autocross to pro series racing, the volunteer worker is key to the success of any racing effort. Why do they do it? It has to be for the love of the sport. Also, it’s a variation of the Golden Rule, pick up cones after others, as they would pick them up after you. 😉
On the this Labor Day weekend (in the USA), I am recogonizing the job that autocross competitors share amongst themselves. Essentially, if you’re not on grid or in the current driving session, you are out on the course watching for tagged (hit) cones. Typically one of the group of workers has a radio to inform those in the operations trailer that a cone was “earned” – which usually adds 2 seconds to your run time – not good. When this happens, you quickly run to replace the cone(s) to its previous location.
The autocross cornerwork also serves a safety function. He/she acts as the eyes & ears for the drivers out on the course, kind of acting as a spotter. When there is an unsafe condition, whether it is the actual approaching car, or something that was caused by another car, the cornerworker with the bright orange flag’s duty is the wave off the run. In most cases, the driver who loses his run (through no fault of his own) gets an additional run, and drives up to the front of the grid.
Another piece of necessary safety equipment is a fire extinguisher. The reason for its existance is self-explanitary. Other equipment that comes in handy Is an umbrella, sun block & some bottled water…
Being a corner worker is kind of like paying your dues, something you need to do on your way to becoming Racing Ready!