Citing Blaine County’s unusually high per-capita COVID-19 infection rate, the Sun Valley Tour de Force announced Wednesday that it has canceled this year’s event, initially scheduled to take place July 23-25.

    The statement comes on the heels of the governor, Ketchum city officials and the Sawtooth National Recreation Area all announcing restrictions on groups larger than 10 people until June at the earliest, at which time crowds larger than 50 will still be prohibited.

     In its announcement Wednesday, the Tour de Force said there are no guarantees for July, especially for an event of its size.

    The Tour de Force is one of the area’s newest additions to the summer calendar, with the now cancelled 2020 installment slated to be only its third consecutive year. Despite its status as a relative newcomer, it attracts motorists and car enthusiasts from near and far for a weekend of speed runs, a downtown rare auto and supercar show and many other events.

    The Tour de Force is organized by a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit called Intrepid Events, which was in the midst of a two-year grant agreement with The Hunger Coalition. In light of the extremely high demand The Hunger Coalition is currently facing, Intrepid Events confirmed it would extend the agreement into 2021 and 2022.

    “This was a difficult decision to make, especially since we are raising funds for The Hunger Coalition,” said Whitney Werth Slade, co-director of the Tour de Force and president of Intrepid Events. “Ultimately, our decision came down to the safety of our guests and the concern for our community. We know how disappointing this is for our fans, but it’s the right thing to do based on the current COVID-19 situation. We know that our decision to cancel greatly impacts our event partners, but we are focused on coming back even stronger next year.”

    The group is already working on the 2021 event, scheduled for July 22-24. Drivers who have already purchased runs for 2020 will have their reservations honored in 2021. The 2020 roster was filled in a matter of weeks, the organization said, so a waiting list will be created for drivers for 2021.

    Visit sunvalleytourdeforce.com for more information and to receive updates as they come.

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