Tuesday, April 21, 2009

This weekend's Willamette Stage Race canceled

Promoters Mike Ripley and Sal Collura canceled this weekend's Willamette Stage Race today due to a low number of pre-registered riders. In an e-mail to the Oregon Bicycle Racing Association mailing list, Ripley said the registration numbers had fallen far short of paying for the race.

Ripley and Collura had previously asked for more riders to register by Today at noon, or the race would not take place. From their e-mails:
The Facts:

Cash Sponsorship in this economy is poor to non-existent.

Willamette costs $20,500 just to break even. And after getting 211 riders in 2008, in 40-degree weather, and losing $3,000, we were OK with that. Sal and I thought with proper planning and a kick-ass course, we should get at least that and maybe more; two or three nice road race courses and an anything-is-possible time trial and the weather will be 20 degree's warmer, probably still a bit of rain.

Currently (midnight Sunday) we have $10,100 dollars from registrations and need 100 more entries to make this race happen.

The Reality:

*By Tuesday at noon* I will officially say the race is on and we have the 100 riders needed to break even and keep this event going...YEA! On the other hand, if we do not get the 100 riders to either register or e-mail me and say "I am coming and here is my rider info and I will pay at sign in," then I will have to *cancel* the race in time to let riders alter plans and hotels, and cancel flaggers to porta poties, and all other race-related stuff and give everyone a full refund.

Many have signed up and yes it will disappoint riders coming from Canada, San Fransisco, and other parts of California, and to those locals who this is their back yard and your back yard in Oregon and the Willamette Valley, this may be it for Willamette.

Bottom line:

I respect your decision on whatever you decide, and want you to achieve all that cycling can for you. We have many opportunities with OBRA, and yes there will be other times to race as I will be holding other events and Sal will also. It is a sign of the times and budgets, so no matter what, no hard feelings. Register now and if you do not, Sal and I will have some time to relax...would you really want that?

Thanks everyone!


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Fellow Racers:

As a promoter, I have never had to cancel a race. It would be heart-breaking. However, with only 100 entrants, it would appear there is no market for WILLAMETTE this year. We will make a decision Tuesday morning that makes the most sense for everyone involved.

Sal Collura
Co-Motion Classic Racing