Approved chest and back protectors must be worn at all ACU events from next year, a new rule has revealed. Riders will be given a year to make sure their body protection is up to official standards for 2019, too. The official information says:
As riders prepare for the 2018 season the ACU Motocross Committee would like to make all riders aware of a change to the Motocross Standing Regulations regarding Body Protection for the 2018 season and beyond.
Following a recent change in the FIM and FIME rules making it compulsory for riders and passengers to wear Chest and Back Protection that meets an international standard of EN1621-2 (back) and EN1621-3 (chest), the ACU have decided to adopt the ruling for 2018. Therefore, for the 2018 season in will be compulsory for all Riders / Passengers to wear suitable Chest and Back Protection during practice and race sessions at all ACU events but it is not required the meet the above standards in the first season.
The plan for the longer term will be to implement the FIM ruling however the exact timescale has yet to be finalised. Back and Chest Protection will be checked at both Technical Control and prior to starting each race, with riders possibly being turned away from the start line if not worn.
Steve McCauley, ACU Motocross Chairman commented “As a committee we have been working on this for a long time and are fully aware of the recent fatal accidents resulting from Chest and Internal injuries. Following the change in the ruling by the FIM and FIME in 2017, we have decided to implement the same principal in measured stages. Consequently in 2018 all riders / passengers must wear Chest and Back Protection, but for 2018 we are allowing them to wear their existing items however in future the specifications will begin to fall in line with the FIM and FIME, so it may be sensible for any riders looking to purchase a new chest and back protector to invest in something that will meet the future ruling. I appreciate this may not be met with positivity from some riders who prefer to race without armour protection. As an ex racer myself I am sure none of us would ride without helmets or boots etc, we need to accept that armour is also a critical facet of injury reduction. Also today’s modern armour is so much less restrictive than it was twenty years ago.
“It’s not just the rider that deals with injuries, our riders families who are often the ones left to pick up the pieces must also be considered. I am hopeful that everyone will appreciate why we feel compelled to bring this measure in and if it saves just one rider from death or serious injuries then it will be well w