Murray Bridge's pedal prix cancelled for 2021

For the second year in a row, uncertainty about COVID-19 has forced the Australian HPV Super Series to pull the pin.

The 2021 Murray Bridge pedal prix will not go ahead, event organisers have announced.

The Australian HPV Super Series’ board members made the decision on Tuesday night in response to the ongoing uncertainty around COVID-related restrictions.

It will be the second year in a row the signature race has not been run, to the disappointment of the students from several local schools who had been training to compete.

In a statement, the organisers blamed the high potential cost of delaying any decision to cancel the event, as well as cross-border travel restrictions and delays in getting a COVID-safe management plan approved by SA Health.

“This sad decision ... is made in the best interests of the organisation, teams and the health and wellbeing of the community,” the statement said.

The race series’ first-ever Tailem Bend event was able to go ahead in May, but a second race scheduled for July 31 had already been cancelled.

As recently as this Monday, Murray Bridge council chief executive Michael Sedgman had been hopeful that the pedal prix would be able to go ahead.

Plans had been afoot to make the event into two six-hour races at Sturt Reserve, with teams staying off-site overnight, instead of the traditional 24-hour format.

In the end, though, organisers decided it would be better to pull the plug altogether.

Planning for any 2022 pedal prix events in the Murraylands will go ahead under new management.

Long-time series boss Andrew McLachlan announced at the same meeting that he planned to retire as chairman and CEO of Australian International Pedal Prix Inc, effective immediately.

He had served in both roles for 19 years, and drove the expansion of Murray Bridge’s annual race into an Australian HPV Super Series.

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