Communications Overview


  • CMT meets once the organisation becomes aware of a situation
  • Clerk of the Course hands over to his Deputy to run sporting matters
  • Pre-defined quiet area but near Race Control / Rally HQ which is equipped with basic means of communication (phone line, fax, Internet, printer etc)


  • Alert : Identify the issue as early as possible via the normal motorsport chanels or via social media listening
  • Assess : the severity of the issue, what type of action is needed and which which stakeholder group
  • Act : Manage the issue

Communications Overview

  • Who : Needs to be communicated with ?
  • How : What method will be used e.g. Text message for officials , phone call to sponsor or statement for media
  • What : Message / Information is communicated

Motorsport Who’s may include

  • The Media
  • The family of those impacted
  • The ASN
  • The Volunteers / Officials working on the event
  • Team management of those involved
  • Sponsors
  • Important local stakeholders

Initial Response…. What went wrong

  • Do not jump into conclusions, you must give one definitive answer
  • Until definitive causes are found – publicize the investigation
  • Rumour vs Fact crisis communications procedures when the news leaked to the media

Sample Initial Tweet ( or statement)

  • An accident has occurred on stage 7 of the X Rally. Emergency crews are on the scene. More information when available.

  • The initial statement takes pressure off your team at this stage and allows you to access the situation and next steps.

Procedures: Rumours

If the information in the media turns out to be rumors, apply rumour procedure:

  • Do not publicize the rumour (any more than the media already had)
  • Promote the opposite of what the rumour said (using qualified speakers / opinion leaders)
  • Provide proof to support the information that you are communicating

Procedures: Facts

If the information in the media was found to be factually correct, employ the fact procedure

  • Admit and apologise for the error(s)
  • Limit the scope (point out on some of your strengths ie experts on scene to deal with accident etc)
  • Where possible, propose a solution so the crisis is not unlikely to reoccur


  • Remember, if the story broke in one particular media outlet first, it is important that you make your response or your first statement to that outlet first.
  • In some cases, e.g. denial of a false rumor, no further action may be needed
  • When this has been done you can, if required, send the information to other media outlets

Initial Response…. Acknowledge

  • You know……
  • Facts beyond question
  • Actions being taken
  • Acknowledgement of emotions/psychological needs ( if needed )
  • Commitment to provide more information as it becomes available