NON-EEA drivers re­minded of visa re­quire­ments to take part in pro­fes­sional sport

Motor Sport News - - Racing News -

Drivers from out­side the Euro­pean Eco­nomic Area who race in Bri­tain have been re­minded of the visa re­quire­ments to com­pete in pro­fes­sional sport.

MN un­der­stands that mem­bers of the MSA and the Home Of­fice met re­cently to dis­cuss visa ar­range­ments for th­ese drivers. The Home Of­fice re­it­er­ated its def­i­ni­tion of a pro­fes­sional sportsper­son, mean­ing some drivers have been rac­ing with the in­cor­rect visa. The Home Of­fice states that a pro­fes­sional sportsper­son is “some­one, paid or un­paid, who cur­rently de­rives, who has in the past de­rived or seeks in the fu­ture to de­rive, a liv­ing from play­ing or coach­ing…un­less they are do­ing so as an ‘Ama­teur’”. There­fore, drivers com­pet­ing in se­ries such as BRDC Bri­tish F3 and Bri­tish F4 fall into this cat­e­gory and need to have a visa that cov­ers pro­fes­sional sport.

Dou­ble R boss An­thony Hieatt – who is run­ning sev­eral drivers from out­side Europe this sea­son – said: “The whole sys­tem is crazy. The drivers are not earn­ing a liv­ing from this; it’s quite the op­po­site, they’re spend­ing money and boost­ing the econ­omy so it’s mad­ness.”

Dou­glas Mo­tor­sport’s F3 racer Thomas Ran­dle is one driver who had the wrong visa. The Aus­tralian said: “I’m in fi­nal talks to sort the visa – I should be OK to con­tinue. It’s daft: we’re bring­ing money into a cham­pi­onship, but the Home Of­fice just sees it as black and white.”

Ran­dle: wrong visa

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