Navigate the Road: Understanding Insurance for Motorsport on Public Roads

Cot23 0932 - REIS Motorsport Insurance

As motorsport enthusiasts and competitors, we often participate in events which traverse the public highway. Whether it is a stage rally, regularity or 12 cars, your insurance policy will likely exclude any form of motor competition.

To mitigate this, specialist brokers like Reis Motorsport Insurance can provide specific policies that provide third-party cover, even when participating in a motorsport event held on public roads.

If that cover isn’t contained within a policy, event organisers have, over the last 40 years or more, offered Road Section insurance—simply a short-term third-party policy that competitors/drivers can purchase when they enter the event.

What you should know:

It has become apparent to us that there is a significant misunderstanding of insurance for competition use. As stakeholders in motorsport, we feel responsible for safeguarding the future of our beloved sport by sharing our knowledge, raising awareness, and promoting good practice.

Here are some facts surrounding Road Traffic Act requirements for insurance whilst taking part in a motorsport event which is road-based:

  1. All motor vehicles traversing any public area or highway must always uphold Road Traffic Act regulations (be road legal), and drivers should hold their own active annual insurance policy relevant to the vehicle in use.
  2. You should check your policy to see if it covers you for the complete duration of the event. Check the motor certificate: is motorsport excluded? If so, check the Schedule to see if the Underwriter has provided a waiver.
  3. If your policy excludes cover while on an event/rally, you will require road section insurance. This is a third-party only extension to your policy and is purchased via the organisers when entering the event.

Road Section cover must not be used in isolation because if you retire, find yourself OTL, or drive on the public road outside of the auspices of the event, your road section policy will no longer be valid; your own insurer/policy would now provide cover as you are no longer in ‘competition.’

If you have an accident on the open road – either a collision with another vehicle or someone else’s property – this is a road traffic accident, and you should stop (where safe to do so). Unless there are injuries (in which case, the priority must be medical treatment), you should take the contact details of the third party and gather any witness statements and images of the damage. If there is a dispute between parties, you may need to involve the police. The details must be reported to your insurer and the event organiser as soon as possible.

Road Section is third-party only insurance and will not pay for damage to your own vehicle, irrespective of whether you have a collision with another vehicle or a tree!

Key Points:

Minimum legal requirement: For all motor vehicles driven on public roads, third-party insurance is the minimum cover required, covering injuries and property damage to others.

Competition use coverage: Your standard insurance policy may exclude tests, time trials, rallying, or any form of competition and/or motorsport. You should consider dedicated motorsport policies provided by Reis Motorsport Insurance for your road cover and third-party on-event cover .

Road section insurance: Event organisers might offer road section insurance to entrants whose insurance policy does not cover their participation. This is a short-term option that fills the gap, but it only covers third-party claims.

Know your limitations: Road section insurance doesn’t cover damage to your own vehicle and ceases when you are no longer actively competing in the event.

Accident procedures: Stop, exchange information, and report to your insurer and event organiser.

Why is this important?

Having the correct insurance policy is lawful: it protects you, others, and the future of motorsport.

Action steps:

  • Check your Policy: Does it cover your motorsport activity?
  • Consider dedicated insurance: Get an annual policy that includes road sections.
  • Understand the terms and limits of road section cover provided by the events.
  • Follow accident procedures: Be responsible and transparent.

By understanding your insurance needs and taking proactive steps, you can enjoy motorsport confidently and contribute to a safe and thriving scene.

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Reis’ Competition Car Insurance Product

Reis Motorsport Insurance can offer a motor policy for a road-legal competition car, which includes third-party cover for the period you are participating in events as well as all other times, irrespective of the number of events you enter.

Additional tips:

  • Consult a specialist broker: They can guide you towards the right policy.
  • Read event regulations: Understand specific insurance requirements.
  • Stay informed: Keep up-to-date with changes in regulations and insurance options.

Remember: Safety and clarity are paramount. By being an informed participant, you ensure a smooth and enjoyable motorsport experience and help safeguard the future of your beloved sport.

Photographs courtesy of M&H Photography

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