The Motorcyclists Confederation of Canada (MCC) has made the first step toward a national takeover of motorcycle racing.
The MCC is a not-for-profit national advocacy organization that champions motorcycling interests throughout Canada. It was set up in 2004 as a federation of clubs, manufacturers, and interested motorcycle groups, and until now has been primarily oriented toward the recreational street and dirt rider.
That changed with the MCC’s announcement at a Mar. 27 press conference that a working group has been created to develop co-ordination of the sanctioning, licensing, and insurance requirements of the myriad motorcycle competition groups in Canada.
Partners in this initial announcement include many of the major professional competition groups in Canada: Canadian MotoSport Racing Club (CMRC) in motocross and flat track; Parts Canada Superbike Championship (PMP) in road racing; and World Enduro Canada (WEC) are three that already span the country. The Big Four OEM manufacturers are also on board, as are several smaller groups from B.C. to Nova Scotia.
"The impetus came from our existing members," says MCC president Peter Jacobs, "although we hope to reach out to all others as well. We’re looking at cross-country benefits such as one competition licence that’s recognized by all groups, improved insurance and safety procedures … there’s a full range of options."
He adds that, "We believe that a national licencing program, for example, will not only make it easier for riders to cross the country, but also give them more opportunity to achieve international status."
There’s the big caveat in all this: the international aspect. Long-time motorcycle racers will recognize the MCC’s plans as pretty much a copy of what the Canadian Motorcycle Association (CMA) is supposed to be doing, although every successful professional series in Canada, including those named above, has operated independently from the CMA for three decades.
Nevertheless, the CMA is the group that has official affiliation with the FIM, the international body that regulates motorcycle sport. What does that mean for the MCC’s hope for "more opportunity to achieve international status"?
Jacobs says, "We simply intend to create opportunities (for the 70,000 riders who belong to our affiliated groups), and of course CMA and FIM can decide what they’ll do about that.
"Certainly we want FIM recognition, and we hope we’ll get it in time on our own merits. We’ve invited CMA to join us ever since we started, we really want them on board, but they’ve declined to get involved with us."
When reached by telephone Marilyn Bastedo, CEO of the CMA (which had been informed of the meeting in advance), said, "We weren’t at the meeting and have no comment."