The Wicked Racing team of driver Dan Morrison and substitute navigator Taylor Thompson makes its way through the course at the Extreme Sports Park in Port Angeles during a September 2019 race. File photo by Keith Thorpe/Olympic Peninsula News Group

The Wicked Racing team of driver Dan Morrison and substitute navigator Taylor Thompson makes its way through the course at the Extreme Sports Park in Port Angeles during a September 2019 race. File photo by Keith Thorpe/Olympic Peninsula News Group

First sprint boat race canceled at Extreme Sports Park

September event in jeopardy

Sprint boat teams are used to navigating the unknown — track setups aren’t divulged until hours before each race, leaving little time to successfully pick of the route’s finer points.

But there’s uncertainty, and there’s uncertainty amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

With confirmed cases rising and Clallam County paused in Phase 2 of the state’s plan to reopen activities, sprint boat racing is in peril this season at Port Angeles’ Extreme Sports Park.

Park co-owner Kelie Morrison confirmed the American Sprint Boat Pro Racing Series event set for July 25 at the park has been canceled, and the Sept. 12 sprint boat race, while still scheduled, is in danger of being axed.

“Like everything at the moment, we are at the mercy of when the phases pick back up again,” Morrison said. “We are still planning for a Sept. 12 race, but we don’t know if we will be able to hold that event. We are still holding out hope for September. As we were moving through this, it kind of looked liked we could potentially reach Phase 4 by September.”

Rising numbers of in-county COVID-19 cases coupled with similar statewide results have put a dark cloud over many summer sporting events.

Clallam County would need to reach Phase 4 in order to hold an event the size and scope of sprint boat racing, which routinely draws thousands of spectators twice a year to Extreme Sports Park.

Tickets honored

Morrison said any previously purchased tickets, tent canopy spots or event sponsorships would be honored at a future race.

“We will honor anything for future races,” Morrison said. “Anybody who pre-ordered anything just stay tuned for more information.”

Morrison said attempting to plan the event amid COVID-19 uncertainty produces even more questions.

“There’s just a domino effect where one thing effects another,” Morrison said. “We can’t get insurance because we can’t get an inspection and get permitted because of the phasing. And we can’t approve vendors because they’ll need to be permitted, too.”

A number of race teams come from Canada, which is expected to extend the closure of its border with the U.S. from July 21 to Aug. 21 this week.

Races set for the state’s other sprint boat track, Webb’s Slough near St. John in Whitman County, also have been pushed back to Aug. 29 and Sept. 26.

Open to ideas

Morrison said park operators would like to hear ideas for other events at the park.

“If somebody else has a grand idea and wants to present something to us, we are open for suggestions,” Morrison said.

“People have brought up putting up a screen and holding a drive-in movie out here.”

For more information on Extreme Sports Park, call Morrison at 360-460-2601.

More in Sports

Prep sports: All fall sports for Olympic League moved to spring

All fall prep sports for the Olympic League have now been postponed… Continue reading

Sports briefs — Aug. 12, 2020

Elliott gets first ace Mike Elliott of Sequim sank his first lifetime… Continue reading

Community scoreboard — Aug. 12, 2020

Golf The Cedars at Dungeness • Men’s Club, 7 Cedars Cup, Aug.… Continue reading

Sequim grad earns PGA national award

Sequim alumni and former Peninsula Golf Club head pro Jacob Lippold added… Continue reading

Sports briefs — Aug. 5, 2020

Jersey helps fund PTC efforts The Peninsula Trails Coalition (PTC) has designed… Continue reading

WIAA shuffles seasons, moves may not matter

The Washington Interscholastic Activities Association announced a handful of updates to its… Continue reading

Community scoreboard — Aug. 5, 2020

Golf The Cedars at Dungeness • Merchants League, July 16 Individual results:… Continue reading

WIAA announces tentative prep seasons for 2020-2021

Football, volleyball and girls soccer will be moved to spring as the… Continue reading

Community scoreboard — July 22, 2020

Golf The Cedars at Dungeness • Men’s Club Championship, July 13-15-17 First… Continue reading

First sprint boat race canceled at Extreme Sports Park

September event in jeopardy

Sports briefs — July 22, 2020

Three days, three aces, one hole Sunland Golf & Country Club may… Continue reading

College Soccer: NWAC pushes season to the spring; basketball to start in January

Peninsula College’s soccer programs will swap its fall season for a spring… Continue reading