TTXGP Crowdsources the 2011 Rule Book

01/11/2010 @ 1:57 pm, by Jensen Beeler15 COMMENTS

TTXGP will be getting an added layer of transparency for 2011, as the Azhar “The Czar” Hussain has put his electric motorcycle racing series rule book up in wiki form, and invited competitors and experts to make, modify, and discuss the regulations that TTXGP competitors will have to adhere to in 2011. Acting as arbitrator and moderator over the wiki is lawyer Harry Mallin, which electric motorcycle fans might know better as Brammofan.

The move to open up and gather input from external sources is a big step for motorcycle racing, and rule making in general. In theory, TTXGP should be able to weigh and balance interests more effectively with a crowdsource writing method. The Czar is critical of the traditional manner in which rules are concocted in closed-door sessions by regulatory bodies (namely the FIM), and then pushed onto competitors with varying degrees of modest feedback.

Besides opening up the rule book, for TTXGP crowdsourcing comes with two distinct advantages. For starters it allows the small organization to focus its limited resources into other areas of the racing series, such as promotion, sponsorship, media, etc. Secondly, it help alleviate growing conflict of interest allegations, which were first brought up here on A&R, and later picked up by the FIM in its negotiations with TTXGP.

Having a rule book that presumably every competitor, supplier, and even fan could contribute to and discuss idea removes perceptions of impropriety in the regulations’s construction. With so many interests and perspectives able to join the discussion on electric motorcycle racing, TTXGP ensures not only that a 360º perspective is added to its rule construction, but also that the series will be able to keep pace with the rapidly changing industry and its technology.

Despite these advantages, the devil is in the details when it comes to implementing a crowdsourcing schema. TTXGP will leave the its wiki open until sometime in August, where it will then sift through the contributions. The finalized rule book will be released in Ocotber at the TTXGP finale in Spain. Hussain has indicated that not every suggestion is going to make it into the rules, and submissions will be initially moderated by Harry Mallin (aka Brammofan).

When he’s not blogging about the Brammo Enertia, Mallin serves as an Assistant Regional Counsel for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Mallin holds a Juris Doctor from The University of Kansas School of Law, and has been active in the electric motorcycle world with his writings. As a lawyer and writer, he makes for an ideal candidate for this chosen role, as a logically and clerically skilled eye will be required to make sense out of competing ideas. However in his selection of Mallin, Hussain again makes the error of mudding the TTXGP waters, and dilutes some of the power found in a crowdsourcing methodology.

Mallin has ties to Brammo CEO Craig Bramscher, and is an adamant fan of the Brammo powercycle. While Mallin’s role as moderator seems to be rooted mostly in weeding out spam, proofing, and other clerical duties, his unofficial involvement with Brammo could be of issue when heated discussions break out during the rule making process.

It should be noted that Brammo has not committed to racing in TTXGP racing series at this point in time.

Source: TTXGP via Ivar Kvadsheim

  • A&R analysis of the 2011 TTXGP rule wiki. RT @Asphalt_Rubber: TTXGP Crowdsources the 2011 Rule Book – #motorcycle

  • TTXGP Crowdsources the 2011 Rule Book

  • iron_cahoonas

    Czar is now a tag. Cool.

    ooh yeah, crowd sourcing thing is neat, but the world is full of idiots. Good luck.

  • Don’t I know it, @iron_cahoonas. Thanks for the good luck wishes, though.

  • RT @skadamo: A&R analysis of the 2011 TTXGP rule wiki. RT @Asphalt_Rubber: TTXGP Crowdsources the 2011 Rule Book –

  • Hurm, I wonder if you’re pressing a mite too hard on this button. It’s probably useful that you are questioning the potential for conflict of interest. There’s also potential to focus so much on this potential that you see conflict of interest where there is none.

  • Quite right David, but I’d rather press too hard than too soft on something like this. Knowing Harry, I’m sure he will be fair and balanced in his role as wiki moderator.

    However, I think anyone covering this sector would be remiss in not questioning a racing body that is appointing someone for a job that is supposed to be neutral to all parties, when that appointee has close connections to a likely racing participant, and has expressed fandom (a little punning here) for that company.

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  • iron_cahoonas

    Some background

    @Brammofan. Are you expressing fandom? How can you live with yourself being lord of the ring and expressing fandom?

  • It must be a typo. I told my wife I was “lord of the ring” and she informed me that I wasn’t even the “deputy of the remote control.”

  • skadamo

    Yeah, Harry has shown love for electric motorcycles in general and never bad mouths non-Brammo’s. I think he is a good pick for the job. It’s a great evolution for Harry too. He has received checks from Brammo but has not financial stake in them. It was only a matter of time before another business looked to him for his skills and the Czar was smart to grab him.

    Beeler, I like the fact that your keeping an eye on things. It will be good for electric long term.

  • Matthew

    Given that the electric motorcycle community is still quite limited, I don’t see how we are going to be able to avoid COIs, especially if we are to consider any connection to more than one body/group/company as a COI. I think the threshold needs to be raised. A&R is starting to come off a little paranoid where this subject is concerned. Just relax a little and let it play out.

  • @Jensen: I’m on record in my own reporting that there is obviously potential for conflict of interest. It was so obvious that I asked Azhar about it in October during a conversation about the yet-to-be-unveiled Mavizen bike. For myself I’m satisfied with his answer then and since. The fact is the electric motorcycle market is rather small at the moment and there is a strategic need to jumpstart the industry. After thinking about the TTXGP/FIM split I don’t think it arose because of conflict of interest but instead an argument over money.

  • McCarthy

    Jensen, its over. The reds aren’t coming. Up the dosage.

  • LoJack

    This has to be the one of the most exciting ideas I have ever come across in motorsport.
    If it works, it could change everything. If it doesn’t…let’s just make this work.