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PPA and CSA – What is the situation?

PPA and CSA – What is the situation?

Background
Founded in 1976 as the Western Province Pedal Power Association, the PPA (a Public Benefit Organisation) came into being as a result of the running of the first Cycle Tour that was to develop into the now-world famous Cape Argus Pick ‘n Pay Cycle Tour. Over the years the Association has grown into the largest cycling body in the country, ending the 2011-2012 membership year with just over 20 000 members.

Until the late nineties, cycling was a fragmented sport with each province looking after its own interests. The Western Cape was the exception, as the PPA took on a role of assisting organisers who wished to put on funrides to raise funds for a charity, club or school, to do so. This is one of the reasons why the Western Cape is still regarded as the only province where cycling continues to grow as a sport.

In 2004, PPA was instrumental in assisting to create a unified national cycling body, for which it was granted equal status to the provincial unions, with the 2004 CSA Constitution granting PPA the right to continue operating as an independent cycling body running its own local calendar and looking after its own affairs as it did before unification.

Before March 2012, what did PPA do for organisers and cyclists, as far as CSA was concerned?
In an effort to assist organisers and cyclists alike, PPA amongst others paid the CSA calendar costs for organisers for Category C and D funrides;  waived its calendar fee entitlement; carried the CSA cyclosport license fees on behalf of PPA members;  waived its entitlement from cyclists; and waived its portion of rider participation levies collected at events.
PPA was the only affiliate/province that committed to pay membership license fees for all its members to CSA; the other provinces left the choice to their members to decide if they wanted to take out a license or not and did not assist the cyclists in any way. In this way, PPA as such paid across well over R1m to CSA over the last few years.

What changed?
In February 2012, Cycling SA adopted a new Constitution to bring them in line with SASCOC ideals. Although the 2004 CSA Constitution contained a clause that stated that PPA had to consent to changes in the CSA Constitution that affected PPA, this procedure was not adhered to and as such there is a question if the 2012 CSA Constitution is valid. The 2012 CSA constitution makes provision for a new Western Cape Cycling Association (consisting of West Coast, Boland, Overberg, Eden, Central Karoo and Cape Town Unicity) to be the recognised provincial affiliate. In doing so, CSA effectively wrote PPA out of its Constitution.

What is PPA and CSA’s current stance on the matter?
Following a meeting with CSA in March 2012 and subsequent meetings since, PPA has informed CSA that it will continue running its affairs as it has done since 1976. This includes running its own calendar and assisting the funrides on its calendar as it has done in the past.

PPA and CSA discussed the difference between funrides (the agreed definition is that no prize money is paid) and races (prize money is paid) and it was proposed that any event that can be classified as a race (such as the league component of funrides, or any event that offers cash podium prizes), will still be sanctioned through CSA [via the local provincial affiliate]. Events classified as funrides can apply to PPA to be on their calendar (with all the benefits that it brings), but do not have to apply to CSA as well for sanctioning.

These proposals are currently with the CSA Board.

What about league events?
League events will be a combined effort between PPA and WP Cycling Association. As such, WPCA will sanction the leagues portion of the event, while the funride portion of the event does not require CSA sanctioning. The relevant CSA fees payable will be carried by the leagues.

Will PPA members need to obtain licenses for non-PPA events?
All cyclists who were paid-up PPA members as at 18 February 2012 hold valid CSA licenses until end-December 2012. From 2013 onwards, at this stage cyclists who elect to participate in an event that has sanctioned with CSA, will need to either take out a CSA cyclosport (R75 for the year) or racing license, or pay the day license (R35 per event) fees. If a cyclist intends doing more than two events per year for which CSA licenses are required, it makes more sense to take out the annual cyclosport license.
Cyclists intending to participate in the PPA league events in 2013 will need to take out CSA licenses. This will be covered through league administration and the organisers will not be involved in any way.

Will PPA still support CSA and racing cycling?
PPA will continue to uphold its constitution, which allows for cycle racing. As such, PPA is continuing with the leagues, and is largely funding the running of the forthcoming 2012 PPA Spring league. PPA also continues to support the WP Cycling Association and CSA and will, where applicable and should funding allow it, fund certain WPCA and CSA cycling projects/initiatives.

What about seeding?
All events on the PPA calendar will continue to use the PPA seeding system, which is based on Racetec results and on the event meeting the relevant seeding criteria.

What about online entries?
Events on the PPA calendar can choose which online entry portal they want to use. We however recommend the Racetec online entry portal, as this is linked to the PPA database.

How does PPA make its money?
Membership fees are generally used to run the Association. PPA further annually receives half of the profits from the Cape Argus Pick n Pay Cycle Tour. These profits are used to subsidise funrides on the PPA calendar as detailed above, as well as to fund worth-while cycling-related projects. In this way PPA granted some R7 million to some 46 cycling projects ranging from giving bicycles to learners to help them commute to school, to creating MTB trails, building BMX tracks and funding studies that look after the rights of cycling commuters. Read more in the “Project Funding” section on www.pedalpower.org.za