As social distancing efforts continue, Squamish50 joins the list of cancelled events in the Sea to Sky this year.
On March 21, organizers announced six of the seven remaining Coast Mountain Trail Running (CMTR) races are cancelled for 2020. The fate of the Whistler Alpine Meadows races, scheduled for September, is yet to be determined.
"Unprecedented times call for unprecedented measures, and we feel it is our duty, as community leaders, to ensure we're doing all we can to assist with the curbing of the spread of COVID-19," organizers said in a statement on the CMTR website.
Survival of the Fittest was set to tackle 18 or 35 kilometres of terrain around Quest University on May 23, while Sky Pilot's course (including a rappel) was previously set for Aug. 9. Perhaps the most prominent in Squamish — drawing nearly 2,000 people racing, volunteering and cheering — the Squamish50 (or 50/50 for those in need of an even greater challenge) was going to hit the trails on Aug. 15 and 16.
"If we continue to commit funds, only to then have to cancel events this summer, we will go under as a company," the statement said.
The CMTR statement also said the organizers believe it is irresponsible to ask runners to continue training during the pandemic.
For registered runners, the company has sent out emails detailing reimbursement. Events are being planned for 2021.