I’ll add a bit of insight to how we went about deploying the medical cars during my time, which started post racing with myself after doing various roles in Race Control and on track from 1993 till 2005.
1993 everything was very basic at state level and indeed national level, and ideas from F1 were filtering through, of how motorsport medical was evolving. Dr Anne Chester was our chief medical officer in WA for many years and worked at many F1 events both in Adelaide and Melbourne from the first Adelaide F1 in 1985 and onwards. Anne came back to Perth with a host of new ideas and was instrumental in introducing and showing to those of us in the WASCC what was being done at the highest level.
In conjunction with CAMS and Tim Schenken, all on track interventions with medical, fire and recovery evolved over the years from those first times when Anne was a medical officer at the F1 event in Adelaide.
The 2017 F1 Medical video which you have seen here explains very well the mind set which we were approaching of deployment of our Medical cars at Wanneroo in the years 2003 – 2005.
Being prepared : It was our view from 2003 at Wanneroo, that those many involved needed to be prepared and we, during the early mornings at Wanneroo on either the Friday of Supercars or Saturday of a normal WASCC event, would deploy our medical cars to do simulations.
With the Clerk of Course David Walker, the entire race control crew would have gained a grid map of the venue at Wanneroo, which was used by all emergency response and on track teams to understand exactly where a point of reference was via radio.
In those years of 2003 and before and after, Landrover Discoverys were made available by the enduring sponsor and supporter of the WASCC, Alf Barbagallo , and they were chosen for one reason. To be able to access areas of the Wanneroo track within the first line of defence or more commonly called the concrete wall.
Given Wanneroo has some vast sand trap run offs, the ability of medical and other emergency to actually get to the scene was well understood then, as is now.
A Friday morning of V8Supercars, as they were then known , was to deploy the Medical Car, with lights and sirens, to a point unknown, by race control, when the circuit was then HOT, via a grid reference, to that location. Race control would say, Victor 1, scramble to G4 as an example. But with a balanced voice which would say, this incident is in Turn 1, drivers right EG.
The main reason for doing simulated deployments back then was to enable the crew on board not to suffer the most simple of things : fright. And to be well prepared and be able, during the deployment to be calm and assess the scene to which they were about to tackle.
And quite simply, as the medical car driver in F1 so well describes, be was able to drive the vehicle within the limits to do the job, without endangering anyone.
Post 2005 and motor sport medical response at all levels of our sport is impeccable.
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