Not a major surprise, but still a major disappointment as the organisers of the Southern 100 have confirmed the races have had to be cancelled again this year.
This decision means only the Manx GP and Classic TT have not yet been formally cancelled, but it is widely expected this will be confirmed shortly.
A statement said:’ ‘It is with much regret that the Directors of Southern 100 Racing must announce that the 2021 Isle of Man Steam Packet Company Southern 100 Road Races have been cancelled due to the ongoing Corona Virus pandemic and the uncertainty of the Isle of Man borders being fully open to general travel by July.’
Club Chairman and Race Secretary, George Peach said: ‘It is very disappointing that the club have had to make this decision after what appeared circumstances would be favourable to run the Southern 100 in July, as normal. Behind the scenes during the winter we have been busy getting all the paperwork in order and in constant contact with our race partners, sponsors, government agencies and others vital to getting the races organised and ready to run – all of whom have been fully behind us for the races to be run on their ‘traditional’ dates.
‘It will certainly be a major blow to our competitors, many of whom make the Southern 100 their ‘feature’ event of the year, as well as the numerous fans and enthusiasts who travel across annually to enjoy the exciting close massed-start races on the Colas Billown Course – all of which were prevented from attending in 2020 and were looking forward to making their journeys across the Irish Sea later this year.’
Southern 100 Racing have looked at alternative dates later in the year, however the concern of the Chief Medical Officer was that sufficient medical cover could not be guaranteed later in the year. A similar situation could exist regarding marshalling the course, with the organisers having to rely more and more on visiting ‘orange army’ personnel.
Press Officer Phil Edge added: ‘Interest from the media and fans regarding this year’s races has been constant and it is sad that we are not able to run as we hoped. As race organisers, we will now take a deep breath and direct our energies towards our three road races held on the Colas Billown Course in 2022 and welcoming back our competitors, race fans and all who enjoy ‘the friendly races’.’
Southern 100 Racing can confirm that the dates for 2022 are as follows:
Blackford’s Pre-TT Classic Road Races
Friday, Saturday & Monday 28th, 29th & 31st May
Silicone Post TT Road Races
Saturday 11th June
Isle of Man Steam Packet Company Southern 100 Road Races
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday 11th, 12th, 13th & 14th July