April 2014 Technical Director Update



April 2014 Technical Director Update


Congratulations to everyone who has made it this far in the season and successfully renewed your licenses. I know it was a big change from years past, and we lost a few in the process, but we appreciate the dedication you all have showed to this noble cause.

MTB A Modules
The MTB modules for advancing up to level A are also in their final stages of editing and should be posted in a week or so.

National Elite Commissaire Class
A few weeks ago we had the first National Elite Commissaire class after the UCI modified their system of National Commissaire qualifications. Twenty-four officials, including 5 Canadians took part in the clinic that was a combination of a USA Cycling National Commissaire course and the new UCI National Elite Commissaire course. Congratulations to the following officials on their successful upgrades:

National Commissaire for Track
Sallie Urffer (PA)
John Allen (CA)
Heather Allen (CA)

National Commissaire for Road
John Allen (CA)
Marco Vasquez (CO)
Howard Johnson (SC)

UCI National Elite Commissaire
Sara Rodney (MO)
Chuck Hodge (SC)
Steve Stone (VA)
Steve Eppel (IA)
Jeff Wu (CA)
Mimi Newcastle (MD)
Heather Allen (CA)
Mark Guthart (CO)
Cyndi Smith (TX)

Rule of the Month
March's Rule of the Month involves the concept of field limits and rule 1H5. You can check out the full blog entry at http://www.usacycling.org/blog/usa-cycling-officials/april-2014-rule-of-the-month.htm.

NASO Summit and Membership
Last year I attended the National Association of Sports Officials (NASO) National Summit in Grand Rapids, MI. There were two other cycling officials in attendance, and it was a really fun and informative time for all. This year’s event is in Albuquerque, NM, July 27-29. Please see the link below to check it out:


It is an amazing experience to be surrounded by hundreds of officials from fifty-something sports. In fact it’s almost a surreal experience. You find out that whether talking local or the big leagues, we all have to face the same issues. I encourage those of you who can make it to do so. If we can get a good turnout, I will plan some social gatherings either just for us, or we may host a reception so the rest of the sports can get to know cycling. Last year I had the thrill of meeting Jerry Markbreit, the legendary NFL referee who changed the face of professional officials, and the rest of the summit for me was emersion in who’s who of top level officiating. Tom and I will definitely be attending this year and hope to see many of you there. Drop me a line if you will go so that I can better plan for what activities we can develop.

Also, in the next month or so we will begin the renewal process for NASO members. If you are already a NASO member and would like to take advantage of this, you can still register through us and you will be refunded the portion of your unused membership and reset to have an account that goes through June, which is our annual renewal period. We have a corporate discount that saves you $20-25 if you renew through us, so let me know if you would like to be added to that list.

NASO membership includes a variety of great benfits. Those benfits include liability insurance, educational and training materials, discounts and advocay.

Officials Assignment Tool (OAT)
We have continued to tweak and debug the assignment tool, including making lots of changes suggested by y’all. For example, from now on when you get assigned to an event, you will get an email from us as well as a website message. This is only true IF you have not opted out of email in your profile choices. If you say not to email you, we really can’t. Also, the system will not automatically reject the assignment for you if you do not accept it within a certain timeline as it was doing previously. That being said, the assignment process has two main phases you should be aware of. The first is when a race is added to the system. An administrator has to do that and then publish the race. At that point all officials in that area or who have selected that as an area of interest will get a system message telling them there are new races in their region. The second is when you are actually assigned. Then you will get a note in the system telling you you have been assigned and asking you to accept or reject the assignment. Until you accept, your name is in a different color on the screen of the assigner and it will not show up in your list of races.

We know that many of you, perhaps most, are not used to using our website as a communication tool, but with OAT there are lots of communications. Please login to your account periodically and check your messages. You probably have lots in the queue right now.

Upcoming versions will have other functions built in. One of the first will be to be able to scan a year at a glance and publish assignments in a more comprehensive form. We used to do that when this was spreadsheet based, and several of you have written to me asking when we were going to publish the national-level assignments as we always have. Unfortunately, at this point my answer is that we are not. It would essentially be a cut and paste of 100 events and that did not make it onto my high priority list. More functions to come will include the tool being a resume builder. Each time you are assigned it tracks the race and will keep it in your resume. We will include places for officials to put their career goals and maybe a checklist of things that they need to do to attain their next upgrade.

That is it for this one. Have a great spring.

Shawn Farrell
Technical Director




This Article Updated May 15, 2014 @ 06:11 PM For more information contact:

Glenda Taylor commented on Sep 3, 2014

I can never find the Officials assignment tool on this website. where is it?

Tom Mahoney commented on Sep 3, 2014

Hey Glenda- The official assignment tool is located on your My Page it can be found in the Officials button in the top right hand corner of the page. Please let us know if you have any further questions!

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