A safe raceday requires lots of volunteers. Some of the hardest-working
volunteers are the AFM Turnworkers. The AFM Turnworker Crew is
one of the best motorcycle racetrack working groups around. Comprised
of a dedicated bunch of people from many different walks of life
(from doctors to students, the retired, husband and wife teams,
even whole families), they all come together to make the raceday
safer for everyone. We have workers that have been with us for
over 20 years, but brand-new talent is always welcome. Some of
our workers travel from Red Bluff, Grass Valley, Modesto, Southern
California, even Carson City, NV, to spend the weekend waving
flags and chasing bikes.
Most of the raceday, the turnworkers just watch the racers
go by. But if a bike goes down, the workers spring into action.
First the Flagger puts out a flag to warn other racers that there
is a problem ahead. The Communicator informs track officials of
what is happening at the incident. The Handler checks the rider
to see if medical attention is needed, gets the downed bike off
course, and places it in a safe location. If necessary, a National
Motorcycle Patroller, one of our first aid volunteers, attends
to the downed rider. Between races everyone checks the track condition
(oil, spare parts, etc.). Watching a corner crew in action is
like watching a ballet. Everyone knows what to do and how to get
it done in the safest, quickest manner possible.
We provide morning coffee and donuts, lunch, after-race beverages
and snacks, as well as ten bucks for gas. Usually we have a freebie
to give away, like hats, T-shirts, hat pins, sports bottles, patches
and other stuff. Once a year there is a Worker Appreciation Race
where the racers donate items to the workers. In the past, very
expensive helmets, Atari computers, boots, gloves, soft luggage,
hats, T-shirts and cash have been given away. Along with the Worker
Appreciation Race is the worker Pizzafest/Bar-B-Que after the
race. After each race we have the required "Bench Flagging"
session, when we discuss incidents and how to do it better next
time. Also, workers who attend every race during the year, rain
or shine, receive the prestigious Die Hard hat.
The Crew is a newsletter which
is mailed out to all AFM trackworkers. It contains trackworker
info/schedules for upcoming races, highlights of the last event(s)
from the worker perspective (race & crash highlights), reports
from the most active turns, news on new & old workers, Die-Hard
worker updates, and other good stuff about the people who make
it all happen. The Worker Coordinatoris the Big Kahuna, Phill
Brown (who is Editor of The Crew and
also does a bunch of graphic design & publishing & organizational
Sounds like fun? Want to join in? Please contact us at (510)
796-7005 ext #2,
or the AFM at P.O. Box 5018-333 Newark, CA 94560, for more information.
Also see any of the recent issues of The
Crew for more details on what's happening.