The Troy Bayliss Classic will not take place in 2018, with increased operating costs and reduced income from this year’s edition threatening the viability of the Taree event.
Troy Bayliss Events and the Taree Motorcycle Club, however, maintain that the cancellation is a hiatus and are hopeful of a 2019 return.
Bayliss says that the event is seeking greater support from sponsors and government, and a bounce in attendance.
“Unfortunately, the cold hard fact is the Troy Bayliss Classic is an expensive event to put on so without some serious backing it is just not financially viable,” Bayliss explained.
“While the 2017 event received support from a list of local and national companies it is not enough to deliver the event that commands months of hard work from Troy Bayliss Events and the Taree Motorcycle Club.
The three-time World Superbike champion does, however, remain committed to running any future editions of the Troy Bayliss Classic at his home town track near Taree, on the New South Wales Mid North Coast.
“We could move the event to another state or track and gain significant tourism support, but Taree Motorcycle Club is where I started racing and is the home of the Troy Bayliss Classic.
“It will be held at the Old Bar circuit, or it won’t take place at all.”
Taree Motorcycle Club President Craig Nelson hailed the event’s impact on the club, but conceded that fans had stayed away despite improvements to facilities, after the 2016 event was washed out midway through the day.
“The event has been fantastic for the club, the town, and the sport,” Nelson said.
“It has put us and dirt track racing on the map again, and we are very disappointed we won’t host the event in 2018.
“Local businesses have really got behind the event, but more support is needed. I believe the rained-out 2016 event contributed to fewer spectators through the gate this year.”
“Hopefully the fans will return in 2019 and keep this event going into the future.”
Jared Mees won this year’s Classic, and currently leads the American Flat Track Pro Twins standings after three rounds.