Readers Poll – Lunchbreak

Over the past couple of weeks we have been involved in several paddock debates on the subject of lunchbreaks. There are several different opinions about this point, so we have decided to have a readers poll to gauge the consensus on this.

First a bit of background, based purely on my own humble opinion. I think that there should be a lunchbreak, but I think that in many cases it goes on for far too long. All of those present at events are there for one thing, to see or to participate in hillclimbing.

There are more and more demands on everybodys time, and travel times are only going in one direction, therefore I would rather see a very short lunchbreak and (if possible) an early end to the event.

Many times we have seen clubs whose events are running early announce a longer lunchbreak, some as long as 2 hours, and then later in the day an incident or inclement weather causes delays and the event doesn’t finish until 7pm or later. Or even worse the event being curtailed before everyone has had their fill of runs.

I understand the point of view that marshals deserve an hours break from their post, but personally when I was marshalling at Finlake & Oddicombe a few years ago I would rather have gotten on with what we were there for and then have some time at the end of the day to wander around the paddock and chat.


  1. Rich Danby says:

    I don’t think I’ve heard any marshals wanting shorter breaks. While drivers can have a break between their runs if they wish there needs to be some break for marshals and other officials. If you plan to have less than an hour for lunch and then have incidents in the morning you have no room to move.

    As for marshals getting a chance to chat at the end of the day, have you seen how many drivers leave early? If you think it is right that marshals and drivers should mix – rather than it being the two separate worlds that it so often feels – then surely the lunch break is the ideal time for that. In fact why not take it the opposite the extreme and say drivers shouldn’t leave their cars during the lunch break so they are there to talk to marshals and spectators

    There is also the argument that events need to run to some sort of timetable to appeal to spectators. e.g. Harewood May National finished at 3:30 which feels like poor value even if spectators have seen the same number of runs as if it finished at 4:30.

    I think you are exaggerating the point a bit as I can’t think of an event that has had a break of over 2 hours or where runs have finished after 7pm – even finishes after 6pm are rare on the events I go to.

  2. ben stapley says:

    If you advertise to the public that timed runs will start at a given time in the afternoon then that is the time you will have to start the timed runs.
    If practice has finished early then you have no option other than have a longer lunchbreak

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