SPOCO south east                                                    

The original sporting courses competition est. 1982


This is the site for SPOCO south east



SPOCO: what's it all about?

SPOCO (sporting courses points competition) surfaced in 1982. It was founded to bring time trial sport away from the time-orientated traditional form which was so successful in the early years. In pre-war and early post-war years the fixed distance concept and subsequent BAR (best all-rounder) competition was practical.

In the 1970s and 1980s the emphasis changed. Fast courses, preferably flat and with the advantage of help from heavy traffic flow, were the desire of both BAR aspirants and event promoters. The title 'Best All-Rounder' was ludicrous. The BAR rider was a flat earth specialist. Only courses on which fast times could be achieved, and days that were termed 'float', were of interest. To ride on days of inclement weather was pointless. The futility of this way of thinking was regularly highlighted whenever British time triallists crossed the Channel. The results against international riders were pathetic. The only British riders to perform creditably in international events were those with a road racing background.

SPOCO was introduced to encourage the use of courses where the traffic was light and the terrain sporting. Standard distances were not necessary, as the competition was decided on placings to give points. The use of non-standard distances made it possible to start and finish at suitable locations. It was at this time that reponsible promoters of events looked for, and found, suitable premises for event headquarters; a big step from the "we're poor and proud of it" mentality of the traditionalist who thought it was fun to behave like itinerant gypsies.

Over the years the SPOCO format has proved popular and successful in the South East and has fostered similar competitions throughout the country.

So that those who are not normally 'stars' can compete for awards, SPOCO organises in conjunction with the main competition a handicap competition. At the end of the season riders' totals are deducted from a possible maximum score. This balance is credited in the following season to be added to that year's points total. Medals are awarded to top placings.

Have a go at SPOCO. Racing on tough courses in bad weather is no longer pointless!

Bill Norris, Founder.

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