The September Round Has Been Canceled
- OMRRA is committed to operating profitable race events
- Not have enough racers & volunteers signed-up by today
- Concerns remain regarding wildfires and rain
- At least we didn’t have murder hornets
Hello OMRRA Members,
We are sad to report that the joint OMRRA / WMRRA September race event at Portland International Raceway has been canceled.
The OMRRA board met this morning to review the status of the three criteria from Thursday’s communication:
- Revenue from race registrations
- Commitment from volunteers
- Air quality in Portland
In looking at these three criteria, the OMRRA Board of Directors determined the following on each topic:
1) The OMRRA board is committed to running race events that produce a positive income. With the low number of race registrations on Saturday at 10am, committing to run the September round would have resulted in a substantial financial loss, which is not sustainable for the future of racing in the Pacific Northwest.
2) OMRRA races only happen with the commitment of volunteers, both behind the scenes and on race day. As of Saturday at 10am, many of the key race day volunteer positions were unfilled, with a large enough disparity that the decision to move forward with the race event may have put the safety of racers and the efficiency of the races at risk.
3) The Air Quality Index in Portland has seen a significant improvement with the arrival of rain, so the risk of hazardous air quality was not a strong factor in the decision.
In addition to the three criteria described above, there were additional factors that were considered in this difficult decision.
First, the number of licensed racers between OMRRA and WMRRA is well over 300. When only 80 racers sign up to race for a joint round, a strong signal is sent that the majority of racers cannot prioritize racing right now.
Similar to the response rate of racers, the response rate of volunteers has been low. This sends a strong signal that the PNW race volunteer community also cannot prioritize racing right now.
Additionally, a large number of Oregonians were displaced from their homes recently, with many areas still under evacuation notices. While unquantified, this has impacted the race community, and our asking of people to prioritize racing at this moment does not feel right.
COVID-19 is still a looming issue, and continues to impact our region. In July, the race event was a success, even with COVID-19 protocols in place. But, September brings additional hardship.
Rain is in the forecast. When it rains, we historically see a 20-40% reduction in the number of race registrations. The current level of registrations may have increased by the registration deadline on Wednesday, but probably not by much with the current forecast.
Finally, pushing as hard as we were to run this event did not feel like the right thing to do for the clubs. In July, we were met with a similarly difficult decision, but proceeded with the round because it felt like the right thing to do at the time – and it was successful. Right now, it does not feel like the right thing to do.
As much as it pains us to write this communication, we believe it’s the right course of action for many reasons. We now have a little more time during the off-season to put an extra shine on our bodywork and think about how good the races in 2021 are going to be.
Some Answers to Questions that Are Likely to Arise
Q: How will 2020 season championships be determined?
A: OMRRA racers will decide. Please watch your email for a ballot.
Q: Will my September registration fees be refunded?
A: Yes, in full. Please stay tuned for specific details on how these will be refunded.
Q: Is the OPRT track day still happening?
A: No. If you paid for the Friday track day, you’ll be refunded through OPRT.
Q: I bought a season pass for OPRT track days at PIR. Will I be refunded?
A: Yes. Please email [email protected] to arrange a credit or refund for your season pass.
Q: Will my gate pass be refunded?
A: No. The $80 gate pass covered all of the OMRRA and WMRRA events for 2020, of which there were 5 ($20 per event X 5 = $100 value).
The OMRRA Board of Directors