Newsletter 6

February, 2021

Vogue Automotive LogoThe Event Committee do hope that you are all staying safe and well as the situation with COVID-19 changes on a regular basis both here and overseas.

The Committee continues to monitor the situation with COVID regularly and as this newsletter is being prepared, we again have border restrictions in place by South Australia and Western Australia that would render the event “a non- event”. This is indeed a frustration for all in terms of completing the event preparations and has obvious flow-on effects. We are not the only event suffering under this uncertainty.

While ever this on-again and off-again situation continues, the Committee are concerned to issue Supplementary Regulations and Entry Forms that will ask for payments for the event and commit you to making accommodation bookings and payments etc that could in time be forfeited if the event does not go ahead. At the same time the event is incurring significant costs as we continue to move forward with optimistic expectation.

For this reason, we have been holding onto the release of the final event information pack pending some clarity of restrictions given the soon to be released COVID Vaccination Program.

Route Checking

The latest feedback on the route has seen some highs and lows, but if one waits a while things seem to resolve themselves. As you may be aware the route checking has been a bit fragmented with sections being looked at in Western Australia, a big drive across South Australia in November and a run across the section from Gunbar to Sydney last week. Piecing each of these sections together to the Course Designer Ian Richards’ satisfaction is a little way off. However, every time we mention a potential “roadblock”, Ian says he has an answer for that, and he always seems to find a solution.

We found that a section over the road between Edi and Brookside in Victoria had been badly damaged when we drove it last week. Yours truly suffered a puncture and a replacement of the tyre was needed. Contact with DELWP Vic followed and word has been received that repairs to the road will be carried out over the coming months. In the meantime, with thoughts of section abandonment, our Course Designer found a wonderful alternative and if I speak nicely to him, we may look to include the section in addition to what looked to be lost to the event last week.

We checked old alignments down to Omeo and some representative sections that will remind participants of how the road used to be in 1968, so we are continuously looking for and finding wonderful roads for you to enjoy.

Owen Polanski and his Alpine 100 Team have signalled some fabulous East Gippsland forest sections to close Day 8 and to start Day 9. We are hopeful that you will relish these sections and reflect on the range of roads you will have travelled to complete the event.

As in Perth, we asked the question of participants whether to follow the suburban route out of the city and the answer was a resounding no. In Sydney we ask you what do you prefer for the final section into Warwick Farm? We can follow the BMC Roadbook from Nowra via Wollongong to Heathcote then to Liverpool, or we can take a more countryfied run up via Kangaroo Valley out of Nowra and around Picton take a short section of motorway to just near Liverpool and the finish? Bear in mind that whatever we do, Sydney’s population is two and a half times that of Perth so the traffic will be heavy nearing the city.
The event will finish at Warwick Farm with an End of Event Function where Finishers Awards will be issued with invited guests honoured.

Event Scheduling and Logistics

While the planning for the route of the event has been proceeding as well as can be expected given the current pandemic issues, the same cannot be said for the overheads of the event. It is with much regret that I must inform you that the costs to run this event have far exceeded my original projections and the updates that I have provide from time to time.

In order to satisfy the Risk and Safety requirements of the large number of entities through which this event will travel, and their stipulation that the event must prepare and apply specific Transport Management and Risk Plans for each entity, combined with the variable fees applicable due to the nature of the event and other unforeseen expenses, the event Fee structure has again had to be amended.

The Committee has been working tirelessly to arrange accommodation availability and meals arrangements with venues and suppliers across the country and these have changed on a regular basis as well. As one might expect, the event will be liable for significant cancellation charges by venues if the event does not go ahead. So, all in all, we have been working with what could be called a moving target throughout this last 12 months. The
Committee has also had to learn a lot especially concerning the current level of risk averse culture in organisations and the work needed to satisfy their requirements.

The Committee have reviewed the costs in the light of all these variations and since January we have been able to more accurately finalise the contracted costs rather than applying proposed fee structures based on budgeted costs.

The FINAL Entry Fee for the event as agreed by the Committee for a Crew of Two (2) is outlined below.
Event Entry inclusions;

  • Entry of an approved Vehicle inclusive of a Crew of two (2)
  • All meals for the Crew of 2 for the duration of the Event
  • Comprehensive Event Roadbook and Guide to the Event
  • Vehicle and Event Signage, and Printing
    Finishers Awards for Crew of two (2)
  • Event Organisation, logistics and Operation covering the Event
  • All Venue and Route Safety implementation costs
  • Fees to LGA’s, State Governments, Parks and other organisations
  • Fees for nominated road safety measures including Transport
  • Management Plans, Risk Assessments and Safety Controls during the Event
  • Officials costs to support the Event logistics and operations
  • Event Registration and Crew Welcoming Function – Perth WA
  • Event Finishing Function – Warwick Farm NSW
  • Event related Insurances
  • Motorsport Australia and other Approval Fees

Event Entry Fee for Crew of two (2) will be $5685.00.

Participation Fee for Passengers and Other Participants will be $1195 per person including all meals for the duration of the event.

Should the above Final Entry Fees and inclusions be such that you feel this is an event that you no longer wish to be part of, please let us know and your
holding deposit will be returned. It was not our intention to mislead anyone and unfortunately the true costs of running an event such as this in 2021 has been somewhat underestimated.

On this not so pleasing note I will conclude this newsletter and allow you to consider your options with regard to continuing with the event.

Best regards,

Laurie Mason
Event Director/Asst Clerk of Course