USA Answers Some Hard Hitting Questions
USA ANSWERS SOME HARD HITTING QUESTIONS
Interesting questions that came to our attention from our scooter industry survey. Though we are still collecting responses (you can participate by clicking this link USA SCOOTER INDUSTRY SURVEY and will be compiling results later this week, we felt this was worthy of our immediate response. And we thank whomever wrote in with them for allowing us the opportunity to address these issues first hand. Here are the questions and our answers:
1. Why do rules and protocols for competitions change after they've already been posted/published? As with any policy, when a better way to do something comes to light and makes more sense, that policy needs to change. As for the winter series, it was held over 4 months/ 4 competitions, and was a process. Being responsive to ways to improve the venues for all involved is always 1st priority. Suggestions from input we received through surveys after each event, once discussed and agreed upon by our board lent to a few amended policies. They were clearly communicated to all participants. At USA we believe in change for the better, and no matter what policies we create or adopt now, we fully expect to amend and update them as agreed to by our board.
2. Why use a judge whose experience is based on being a parent of a pro rider when an actual professional rider who is not competing in the event is available? Not every competition judge is a pro rider. And not every pro rider is a qualified judge. Our judges are selected on their experience in the industry, their knowledge and their understanding of USA judging criteria. There is a training process to learn the scoring and criteria, and changing a judge to an untrained, untested pro rider simply based on his “being a pro” would be irresponsible and unprofessional.
3. Why give "participation ribbons" to some riders? We do not give out participation ribbons. There were two riders who had been injured and who still attended regardless of their inability to compete in the finals. We felt they deserved recognition for the effort they put into the sport and the WCWS, and though injured, they still came to the event to watch and support. That kind of camaraderie is what the sport is about.
4. Why are beginner riders given less time in their comp runs? The short answer is, they do not yet have the range of skills/tricks to warrant a full minute without being repetitive in their runs, and being typically younger and smaller, and novices, this was agreed to be compassionate and appropriate.
5. Why can't riders obey protocol to practice during their own designated comp practice time? This is a bad result that a lot of riders create at venues where the staff does not enforce the rules. This was not a problem at the ATown contests, perhaps because the acoustics/loud speaker works so well there, and also because park management provided appropriate focus to prevent this from being an issue.
Why do some events allow advanced riders to ride during beginner warm ups and vice versa? Same answer as above.
6. What is the process of sanctioning an event? To be considered a “USA” event the venue/organizer simply needs to agree to adopt our rider levels, event format/pricing, and policies for impartial judging and transparent scoring. We have a couple levels of sanctioning… “supported” where an event simply agrees to those items, but handles production of the event themselves, and “sponsored” where we are hands on involved in event production/helping the event with marketing, flyers, checks, judges, securing sponsors…etc
7. How will USA align with ISA rules, regulations, protocol? We have already based much of our policies on framework as described in their guidelines. We will always be open to aligning with any and all other associations in order to create a unified sport, and are prepared to arbitrate and align whenever & wherever needed to get this done.
8. How will USA remain unbiased in the industry and not be influenced by outside business ventures or the professional pursuits of their own children? As an “association” the USA board and its advisors operate as a committee, members of which share a core vision to create unity, fairness and integrity for the sport. Our commitment to impartiality, transparency and fairness in competition is our first priority. And as we are an association, we are free from agendas that promote any one park, shop, brand, or team. Our commitment to these values was demonstrated this season with the difficult decision to pull USA sanctioning from the 2nd WCWS event at one venue, because of the unwillingness of that park's staff to adhere to USA policy that prohibits park staff participating in the scoring. This was a very difficult decision that we made, and it demonstrates how important it is for this association that venues and their staff adhere to USA policies. It is our highest priority to provide results that cannot be challenged and that are completely transparent and fair. Finally, the professional pursuits of some member's children has nothing to do with our association and its mission and is not something that would ever pose an issue with our remaining unbiased.
In conclusion, we are grateful for your questions and the opportunity to clarify our position on these issues. If you have any further questions we would again welcome the opportunity to answer them. We would also like to encourage any other industry leaders to join us as part of our advisory board and help us shape the future of this great sport. Unifying this sport is so important, and needs to happen if it can be considered for the X-Games and the Olympics one day.
“Progress is a nice word, but change is its motivator. And change has its enemies.” – Robert Kennedy