Walton TransCan cancelled for this year - July 27, 2017
BY DENNY SCOTT
The 2017 Walton TransCan Motocross Grand National Championships, scheduled for Aug. 16-20 is cancelled.
The cancellation is due to, according to a press release, “an unfortunate combination of circumstances including, but not limited to, the uncertain financial viability of the event for this year and the inability to resolve management disagreements regarding the operation of Tite Racing Promotions Inc.”
Chris Lee, the founder of the Walton Raceway and TransCan event, said that the weather of the past several years played a part in the decision.
“We had more than 200 millimetres of rain last year,” he said. “People can’t get to it and stay away in droves with that kind of rain. From that point forward, we were looking for a lot of things to go the right way and it didn’t.”
Last year’s wet weather came five years after a tornado hit Huron County, also during the TransCan, in 2011.
“Those were amongst the most challenging events to run,” Chris said. “Doing anything outdoors comes with a degree of risk, but getting caught twice in a five-year period was outside the norm of the 25 years of experience.”
Chris said the problems that led to the decision may have been overcome as individual hurdles, but several problems coalesced at once which resulted in the cancellation.
The release recognizes the support of its sponsors, riders and sports fans, which made the decision a difficult one to make.
“Without full confidence in our ability to maintain the quality and integrity of the TransCan as the preeminent event of its kind we have elected to suspend plans for 2017,” the release stated. “The impending future of the Motocross Grand National Championships continues to be discussed, reimagined and recreated for 2018 in order to maintain the distinction, honour and pride of being a Canadian Motocross Grand National Champion.”
Those who paid for pre-entries are eligible for full refunds through PayPal according to the press release. If anyone encounters issues regarding the refunds, the release encourages them to contact Tite Racing Promotions’ Mark Perrin, at Mark@motocrosscanada.ca.
In the release, Perrin and Brett Lee of Tite Racing Promotions, who manage the Walton Raceway, express regret at the decision.
“This is a devastating development for everyone involved in this cherished event,” the release states. “For 25 years this event has been a point of pride for the community of Walton, Huron County, Walton Raceway and motocross enthusiasts across Canada. We will continue our commitment to ensuring proper and professional succession in the growth of motocross.”
Chris said that it will lead to an odd August around the Walton Raceway.
“For Judy and me, and for all of us really, as the boys were pretty young when we first started hosting the event, the month will be a strange one,” he said. “For 25 years the event has taken most of August to plan and prepare for and, to have an August where it’s not on our minds will be something strange.”
For more information, visit the event’s website at waltontranscan.ca or the raceway’s site at waltonraceway.ca.