Chopping stands down from JAC

Thursday 04 November, 2021
Photos: Mark Teague
After serving on the Judicial Advisory Committee (JAC) since its inauguration and its previous iteration since 2005, Steve Chopping AM will officially step down as Chair as he looks to scale back his involvement in the sport.  
  
Chopping has made an enormous contribution to the sport both in Australia and overseas in a career spanning more than six decades. 
  
Throughout his time, the Tasmanian native has held many important roles at all levels of motorsport – from grassroots events in his home state to Formula 1 rounds around the world. 
  
His highlights include serving on the Motorsport Australia Board between 1979 and 1995 and as Vice President to John Large OAM, as well as being Chair of the Supercars Stewards for 10 years and being crowned as the Official of the Year in 2012. 
  
Chopping also received Life Membership and a CAMS Award of Merit in 2017, one year after officially being named a Member of the Order of Australia. 
  
Outside of his most notable achievements,  Chopping has held positions on at least one Motorsport Australia committee every year since 1976, which includes roles as  Chair of the Superkarts, Officiating, Recognition and Fuel Regulation committees. 
  
Having started as a timekeeper during his first year of high school, Chopping quickly worked his way up the ranks and became Clerk of Course just four years after his first motorsport meeting and still just a teenager.  
  
CAMS Awards-26
Chopping continued to gain experience at as many meetings as he could attend, and soon became a Steward – a role he would excel in for more than half a century.  
  
On an international front, he was just as exceptional, and on top of holding a FIA Platinum Stewards Licence, Chopping sat on the FIA Anti-Doping Tribunal for many years. He also worked at Formula 1, Formula 2 and World Touring Car Racing Championship events around the world – his work on the latter category earning him the role of Chair of the Stewards for WTCR. 
  
With Australia's international COVID restrictions preventing him from contributing to the international panel in recent years, the break gave the lawyer of 49 years a chance to evaluate his current position in the sport. 
  
And although the decision was then made to step down as Chair of the Judicial Advisory Committee – he will remain involved in the sport on a casual basis. 
  
“Reluctantly, I feel that the time has come for me to stand aside as Chair of the Judicial Advisory Committee and reduce my activity within the sport,” Chopping said. 
  
“I am quite sad in doing so, but I feel the time is right and the sport is changing – especially since there are a lot of talented young people coming through the system.  
  
“I never really wanted to be one of the old guys that people wanted to replace and it seems I have created enough succession plans to put me out of a job. There is nothing left for me to do. 
  
“If anybody can say they are living the dream, I truly believe I am and have been for a very long time, for which I am very lucky. 
  
“Over the years, I have seen huge advancements in safety, competition and technology, as well as many talented people come into the sport, so it’s only appropriate to give them the opportunity to advance and enjoy the same experiences I had.  
  
“I am also content with the belief that I have been instrumental in bringing about a change in the philosophy of stewards and have assisted many of our current national appointments to advance their stewarding careers. 

“I’ve had many highlights over the years. From seeing a young Michael Masi (Current Formula 1 Race Director) start in motorsport to attending international events and receiving all the accolades I have.  
  
“Finally, I must say a big thank you to all those individuals who played a significant role in my career of 61 years.” 
  
Motorsport Australia CEO Eugene Arocca paid tribute to Chopping. 
  
“It is with some reluctance that we accept Steve's resignation as Chair of the Judicial Advisory Committee,” Arocca said. 
  
"Steve has been a loyal servant to the sport and on behalf of everyone at Motorsport Australia I extend our thanks to Steve for his dedication to motorsport and officiating.

"We have been very fortunate to have had access to his knowledge, experience and passion over the years.

"While Steve is no longer the Chair of the Committee, we are pleased he will still be involved in events as a Steward wherever possible and in line with his ongoing availability."
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