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So what’s this got to do with the sport in Britain?

Had this action succeeded a dangerous precedent would have been set. It could have rung the death knell of not just rallying, but all forms of motor sport throughout the British Isles. That is because there was a principle at stake here - the legality and robustness of the Disclaimer on every motorised sport Entry Form.

It is a fact of motor sporting life that we absolve organisers and officials of responsibility at motor sports events by signing the ‘Disclaimer’ on rally and race Entry Forms. In doing so, competitors assume responsibility for their own actions, they either agree and participate, or they go home and sit in an armchair. Life is a risk, never mind sport.

However, had this action succeeded it would have had further ramifications. The family of an injured competitor would have had the right to sue officials, organisers, marshals, medics, rescue crews and even service crews. Just suppose a service crew member or race mechanic had forgotten to tighten a wheel nut, and the wheel had come off causing the driver to crash, and heaven forbid, spectators to be injured. The end result, apart from injuries, would have provided a field day for the litigious and the grieved.

In such a case, motor sport might well have been suspended pending the outcome. If the judgements had gone against the sport, it could have killed it there and then, if not, the increased insurance premiums would have made it prohibitive, but with the same result – putting amateur sport out of business.

Rally SOS

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