It is with mixed emotions and a very heavy heart that TransRockies is canceling the inaugural TransRockies Gravel Royale. The decision came following BC Health’s new COVID-19 restrictions announced on Friday that limits the size of ‘outdoor gatherings’ to 100 people maximum.
Over 200 people were slated to start the Gravel Royale this Monday at Panorama and pedal into Fernie on Thursday. Aaron McConnell, TransRockies President, commented, “With the number of variables occurring at such high cadence, we cannot in good faith deliver the experience we’re committed to offering our athletes.” The event included three wilderness tent camps that wouldn’t comply with the new health restrictions.
McConnell apologized for any stress this changed mandate has caused the participants and supporters. Even without the challenges of today’s pandemic-related announcement, producing a four-day gravel stage race for 200+ people is complex. Fernie was this years finish community, the participants were to ride into town by Hartley Pass and finish at Annex Park.
Local organizer Dan Savage commented,”Bike tourism has become an economic driver for Fernie and the TransRockies has been instrumental in developing this market. Gravel events have become very popular and the industry roads surrounding Fernie offer excellent riding. The TransRockies plan to build this event to over 1,000 riders and it’s disappointing to cancel the event at this stage of planning.”
The Gravel Royale Fernie stage sponsor was Gearhub Sports and the accommodation sponsors include; Park Place Lodge, Red Tree Lodge, Fernie Reservations, The Raging Elk Adventure Lodge, Snow Valley Accommodations, Fernie Lodging Company, Fernie alpine Resort and the Fernie RV Resort. Their generous support helped bring the event to Fernie and we look forward to future events.
At this time the Singletrack 6 has not been cancelled and is being considered to proceed with full compliance with the new health order. A final decision will be made this coming week. Stay tuned.