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The end of IMLEC

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PT11/05/2011 12:46:05
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Hi All,
 
Let me start this thread with a few comments about myself so I can explain these comments come from an unbiased opinion. In fact should they ever be noted and hopefully have some bearing on future competitions they will hamper my prospects of being succesful at imlec. I have entered many imlec's (15) with many different loco's finishing in a variety of positions from last to 2nd. I have enjoyed them all very much.
 
In the early '90s the rules on imlec were changed meaning once a locomotive had won three times it was no longer allowed in. This was made purely as one particular locomotive and driver had won the previous three imlec's and some feared would never be beaten. This loco and driver where beaten at last years imlec!
 
By 2002 at leeds entries where becoming thin on the ground with only 19 competitors at a very popular location. It had become clear that the rule had eventually hampered the competition and affected the ammount of people able to enter.
 
Previously in 2000 Mr Alan Crossfield, a well respected model engineer contributor and imlec supporter had come up with a happy medium to keep all in general happy. A loco/driver could win the tournament, defend the title and if succesful re-enter after 10 years. The driver could re enter with a new loco at any time. I do not remember any negative comments about this and it had the support of the model engineer editorial staff.
 
Over the last 10 years the rules have been continually messed around club to club and we have arrived at the current situation which to my mind (and I know I am not alone) will kill off one of the 'premier' weekends in the model engineer calender. There other new rules I disagree with but my main disputes are these:-
 
1. First come first serve is no longer considered viable, a draw must take place to decide who has entered.
 
I can see no justifiable reason why, the first postal applications recieved after a certian date and the advert in model engineer are not the entrants. Under the new scheme keen imlec entrants may not get in whilst someone who is half hearted will take their place. The draw also leaves little time to arrange hotels, travel ect.
 
2. Any previous winner driver is now no longer allowed in the competition and must enter the 'previous winners competition' The previous winners competition has recieved few entries over the years and de-values the Martin Evans challenge trophy. But to now say no previous winner driver can enter imlec is completely absurd. If the rules now stay as they are you will have more previous winners than imlec entrants.
 
Remember I make this comment as someone who has not won imlec and under these rules would have won in a previous competitions. I have also previously entered locos with little or no chance of winning, purely to support the event.
 
I am aware that there are a few who may not agree with me but I feel a vast majority of people who do have an interest in imlec, both competitors and spectators will.
 
To those who disagree I would say this:- Nothing in life worth having is easy. To win a competition you have to beat the best, not win because they where not allowed in!
 
I would urge model engineer to please consider abolishing the previous winners competition and return to the Leyland 2000 event rules by Alan Crossfield from next year onwards, and that these rules are sent to the future host societies so imlec can get back to being one of the best accolades and events you can be a part of in this hobby.
 
I would also appreciate it if the editor would be kind enough to place this in the next available magazine issue.
 
yours
 
Paul T.
 
Trevor Collyer13/05/2011 22:43:10
2 forum posts
I have Just read throught the points made by Paul T.and I think his analysis is absolutely correct.
 
The "ten year rule", for excluding a winning combination of loco and driver who had already had the chance to defend his/her title, once seemed like a good idea to prevent a potentially off-putting string of successive wins. Perhaps five years would be sufficient, but the principle is sound.
If a previous winner has made and entered a new locomotive it seems unfair to put him/her into a previous winners class - it is after all the combination of loco and driver which creates a winning run. I believe the "previous winners" category should be abandoned.
Perhaps an occasional reprise of the Birmingham "Superlec" would allow previous winners and their locos to take part in a special event from time to time.
 
I can see only unnecessary problems with selection of successful applicants by a draw. Whilst it is important to give a reasonable time for applications to those people who may not see the magazine until a little later and who do not have access to e-mail/internet, a deadline of, say one month after the applications are invited would seem sufficient. If at this point there are more applications than places a "first-come-first-served" principle should apply. If the number of applicants is insufficient then an appeal through "Smoke Rings" would seem appropriate.
 
Let's have an exchange of views on this subject with the idea of formulating a fixed set of rules which all believe will ensure the best prospects for this high-profile competition.
 
Once these rules have been agreed, the host club should only make any changes which are specific to their particicular track, e.g.start point for recording of work done etc.
 
See you at Bromsgrove!
 
Trevor Collyer (Leyland SME)

Edited By Trevor Collyer on 13/05/2011 22:44:29

Edited By Trevor Collyer on 13/05/2011 22:44:54

Ian S C14/05/2011 10:37:08
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Looking from outside,my suggestion is, after a set number of wins the combined team of locomotive and driver step aside, but either the same locomotive and another driver, or the driver with another locomotive may compete. Prehaps if there are more competetors than there is room for, first in first served, then maybe multi winners could step aside. Ian S C
PETER AYERS14/05/2011 16:53:50
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25 forum posts

I agre with the rule that a winner is allowed to defend the following year with the same loco an d then that loco be excluded for a set time. The same situation occured in the Isle of Man in the fifties with the clubmans TT the BSA Gold Star won year after year and in the end the ACU stopped the races to everyones loss. I hope this does not happen to IMLEC.
Peter A
Gordon W14/05/2011 19:44:12
2011 forum posts
Don't think the clubmans was stopped because of the Goldie! What is it called now ? I always liked the american system, at the end of the race the winning vehicle was put up for auction, supposed to stop spending to much money on the job. Don't know if this still applies.
David Clark 116/05/2011 16:30:12
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Hi There
These are the rules (below) that were based on previous rules.
These were forwarded to this year's host club as far as I am aware.
They were based on original rules.
The bit everyone is complaining about was not included in this version of the rules.
I don't know who put it in but it was not the Model Engineer team.
 
The draw is because the clubs usually limit the entries.
It has been suggested that if the Saturday and Sunday are oversubscribed, the competion could be extended to include the Friday.
 
A blind draw seemed the best way of allocating entries. This avoids entrants who don't have email and internet access from being penalised.
The rules about previous winners can be altered if necessary.
regards david
 
 

IMLEC Notes
Model Engineer provide the cash prizes.
Not sure about coupling fork, will check this out.
Prizes will be provided by Model Engineer magazine.
The cheque will be made out to the host club who will supply the individual cheques for the winners on the day.
Martin Evans Trophy Competition
1st place £150
2nd £100
3rd £75
Best 3 ½ inch £50 (provided there are at least 2 entries)
Previous Winners Competition £50
Model Engineer Magazine Rules and Organisation for IMLEC
1. The competition will be open to all 3½in. and 5in. gauge steam locomotives capable of running on raised track
2. The competition will be open to previous IMLEC winners, previous competitors and newcomers on a first out of the hat basis. Entries may be received up to the closing date and all will be put into a separate plain envelope. A draw will take place and entries will be allocated as the entries are drawn. Reserve entries can be accepted at the host club’s discretion but a run will not be guaranteed. Entries will be restricted to fifteen per day. (No previous entry restrictions apply.)
3. The competition will comprise "a previous winners’" competition and the annual IMLEC competition to run concurrently. (Drivers or locomotives who have won IMLEC previously go into the Winners competition.)
4. The Driver may use his own driving truck or use one supplied by the Host Society. The Dynamometer Car will be coupled directly behind the Driving Truck and will carry the Observer.
5. The competition will commence at 08.30 on both Saturday and Sunday. Competitors will be allocated a run number and start time. This information will be given with the instruction pack issued after being accepted to the competition.
6. Competitors must arrive at the track at least one and a half hours before their run and report to the steaming bay reception. Competitors must, at this time, present a current boiler certificate for the locomotive to be used in the competition and state the number of passengers required for the run.
7. One hour before the commencement of the run, the Driver will be allocated an observer and asked the size and the amount of coal that is required for the run. This will be weighed and allocated in presence of the Driver. Additional coal will be available on the run and all excess will be returned and debited off the total in the Driver's presence.
8. Drivers must use their discretion when deciding to commence lighting up, but must be ready to start their run at the time allotted. Any time slippage will be notified to the Driver before lighting up.
9. When ready to raise steam for the run, the Driver will be provided with as much dry, or paraffin soaked, charcoal and wood as required to raise steam. The Driver may change over to the measured coal when he likes, but all coal used is included in the weighed amount for the run. The Driver must have a good coal fire burning before going out onto the track.
10. (Note for host society: 12 and 24 Volt DC. power should be available to drive steam-raising blowers on all the steaming bays)
11. The train will be prepared for the Driver with the dynamometer car at the front and sufficient passenger cars to carry the number of passengers he/she requires. For safety reasons this must be limited to a maximum of 28 persons excluding the Driver and Observer.
12. The driving truck of the competing locomotive must be equipped with a forked towing coupling that will accept a 1/8 inch thick coupling plate to be attached using a 1/4 inch diameter pin, the plate and pin will be supplied by the host society. The suggested forked coupling dimensions are shown below. ((This needs to be sorted out - suggestions welcome))
13. The Steaming Bay Marshal will tell the Driver when to move the locomotive onto the running track.
14. All coupling and uncoupling of the locomotive to the train must be carried out by the host club officials.
15. The train will then be moved to the station to take on the passenger load.
16. The Observer will record the initial dynamometer car readings in the presence of the Driver.
17. The Driver will tell the Observer when he is ready and the Timekeeper will then give the Driver permission to start. Sand will be provided to assist the starting of the Train if required.
18. The duration of the run is a nominal 30 minutes. No time allowance will be made for stops except for derailments. A competitor may opt to stop once 25 minutes have been completed but the run must terminate in the station. Any competitor not completing 25 minutes will be deemed to have retired. A lineside clock will be provided so that the Driver can see the progress of his run. The Driver will be advised when he/she has ten and f

PT16/05/2011 17:03:56
15 forum posts
1 photos
Hi David,
 
The bulk of those rules have been around for a few years with the exception of my main 2 points.
 
Drivers who have previously won imlec have never before been banned from entering again with a different locomotive. It was only the locomotive with that driver combination that couldn't. A winning loco could also be entered with a different driver.
 
The draw has only been introduced last year and this year. How it is 'fair' is way beyond me. I agree entrants that do not have internet access should never have a disadvantage over those who have hence my comment on first come first serve postal applications after the magazine hits the shops with an entries invited advert. This is the way it was always done apart from very recently.
 
Are the rules as above to be continued as they are from next year onwards as well?
 
cheers
 
Paul
David Clark 116/05/2011 17:12:47
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3357 forum posts
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Hi Paul
 
"Drivers who have previously won imlec have never before been banned from entering again with a different locomotive. It was only the locomotive with that driver combination that couldn't. A winning loco could also be entered with a different driver."
 
I don't know why they have been banned this time. Nothing to do with Model Engineer.
Clearly a rather stupid rule.
 
The draw is a fair way of choosing aplicants.
The problem was a recent host club put entry requests on their website before they appeared in the magazine.
This meant many people who wanted to enter were too late because they did not have internet access.
A blind draw seems the best way forward unless clubs are willing to turn IMLEC into a three day event where entries were sufficient.
regards David
 
PT16/05/2011 18:42:45
15 forum posts
1 photos
Hi David,
 
yes I am aware it was not model engineer who put in these changes.
 
Regarding the draw, yes one year it was advertised by the host club on the internet, most unfairly some didnt get in. My point is, before this it was always done postal as above and no one had a problem with this. Last year the host club chose to restrict the competition to the fewest ever accepted entrants and come up with the draw. Everyone I have spoken to about this doesnt like it, it also leaves no time for arranging travel or accomodation when it can be in popular parts of the country for summertime.
 
cheers
 
Paul
KWIL17/05/2011 20:03:35
3102 forum posts
56 photos
As a disinterested party, ie I will NOT be competing, might I suggest:-
 
A.That ME publish a Code Number which MUST appear on all written entries, (that deals with prior advertising) and
 
B That the entries should go to an independent receiving address (that deals with any suggestion of Host Club bias).
 
C The Independent receiver informs the Host Club of the entrants in order of application received prior to the Closure Date and up to the Agreed maximum entrants, the Host Club then must deal with the administration of the Event with the successful aplicants.
Dusty17/05/2011 20:56:10
464 forum posts
8 photos
In addition to Kwils suggestions. I would advacate that a nominated day for entries be published, say 10 days after the magazines publishing date. This overcomes any bias towards possible entrants who are subscribers. Entries received prior to this date would be invalid.
David Clark 117/05/2011 21:29:25
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3357 forum posts
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10 articles
Hi There
 
Rule 3
The competition will comprise "a previous winners’" competition and the annual IMLEC competition to run concurrently. (Drivers or locomotives who have won IMLEC previously go into the Winners competition.)
 
I can see how this rule is being misinterpreted.
I have spoken to Bromsgrove and they will be contacting all who requested an entry form to tell them that rule 3 is being removed.
All entries including previous winners will go into the main competition.
If you already have an entry form, please send it back straight away.
 
I see no easy way around the blind draw this time (too late) but next time, we will sort something out.
The original reason for the change was the unfair advantage given to internet users.
regards David
 
 
 
 
 
David Clark 117/05/2011 21:36:17
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3357 forum posts
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Hi Pt
Drop me an email with your name and location in the country so I can add it to your letter in ME.
regards david
 
PT18/05/2011 10:45:42
15 forum posts
1 photos
Hi All,
 
thank you for your comments, I agree with a majority of it. The suggestions for postal applications sounds good to me and is a very close copy of what used to happen pre-internet.
David, I would not expect the draw to be changed this year, far to late in the day, my reason for starting this thread was so that hopefully changes could be made from next year onwards.
 
A Superlec every 4 years? Sounds good to me, the event back in '98 was absolutely superb and a privilige to be a part of. Shame it hasnt been held since.
 
cheers
 
Paul
andrew giffen19/05/2011 09:50:27
1 forum posts
Hi all,
 
Very much like the idea of a Superlec every few years. I think the australian clubs have hit on a good approach - although the main event is the efficiency competition, there are also plenty other fun peripheral things going on, and other simultaneous categories to throw the net wider and ensure more inclusive participation.
 
One is a concours d'elegance (for both engine and driver!) for those who like polishing and dressing up (as it were), I remember one was longest time to cover 10 yards of track without actually stopping at any time - for fun and showing skill with control.
 
Another was best stack talk for eg, all for fun to keep the spirit of the event light-hearted, after all, I suspect that for many, like me, the event is as much the chance to have a good thrash with a heavy load non-stop for a half hour, than anything else.
 
cheers
andy

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