Running events in a Covid World

I will be honest with you: life as an event organiser is not easy right now. But then again life in any job is probably not easy right now, so don’t feel sorry for us. We are excited to be working and (out) on track again.

Let’s start with some good news: over the last 2 weekends we had 700 Fox Superflow riders racing on 4 days in NSW and QLD. The new formats and rules we implemented worked and while not everything was perfect, overall we were extremely happy and proud with the events. The first ones back after our hiatus.

Event preparations

To give you an idea about current timelines: usually we plan events 6+12 months in advance and open registration about 6-8 weeks prior to every event as well as ramp up the marketing. For our first Fox Superflow our lead time was 10 days and with 3 days to go I was watching a COVID press conference to see if the event would go ahead or restrictions would be tightened again and we go back to closing our doors.

Now this situation hasn’t really changed in NSW – luckily in QLD we are in a more secure spot right now but know how quickly things can change. We are monitoring case numbers, and listen to health advice on a daily basis. Most importantly, we follow the latest health orders which give us very clear guidelines about what is allowed right now and where.

What we’ve learned so far

We did learn a lot at the last 2 events: mainly that we CAN create a relatively safe environment in a state forest, national park or any other MTB park where we are outdoors and have quite a lot of room for our trails and event hub. This is why we will continue running our events unless gathering laws change.

We totally understand that some of you might not feel comfortable to attend any gathering of people at the moment. We get that. So:

  • if you have signed up for an event and are anxious about going there, just let us know and we will refund your entry fee. No need for explanation or reasons.

What we enforce

The general Federal and State Covid-19 rules and regulations that are by now pretty common in our daily lives obviously apply to our events too:

  • if you feel sick or show any symptoms, have had any contact with a person that might have Covid 19 DO NOT COME TO THE EVENT. Simple as that. Get in touch with us and, once again, we will refund your entry. No questions asked.
  • At the event be mindful give each other plenty of space in the event centre. We are working hard to facilitate that and the 700 riders we saw in the last 2 weeks all did the right thing.
  • We are applying rider cap across our events that are well below the 500 people which are technically allowed to be at a community sporting event right now. We do this so that can work on our specific Covid safe plans and make them better as we move forward. You will find a copy of the Rocky Trail Covid19-Safe plan here.
  • We will publish virtual rider briefings with venue-specific rules ahead of every event and in this communication we will repeat all these new rules and regulations.

Running events with that virus in the air will be something we need to do for the next 6-12 months (this obviously is a very rough guess but my hunches aren’t too bad usually) and getting the line right between giving you a day out on the bike where you can concentrate on the trail in front of your wheel rather than listen to the latest news updates, making sure our business survives and keeping us all safe is certainly a challenge. But mastering challenges is what we’re good at. On and off the bike.

See you on the startline!


Martin Wisata
Martin Wisata

This is an update from Rocky Trail’s Founder and Race Director. Find out more about the team: