1 2 3
Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Director of Marketing & Digital Assets
9/4/20 11:01 a.m.

Hi everybody,

It's been a few weeks since I gave you an update about how we're planning to safely host the $2000 Challenge on October 23-24, so I wanted to give you a few updates. 

First, the good news: The winner of the $2000 Challenge will be receiving $1000 in cash from eBay Motors!

Next, the bad news: Despite months of discussion, plans, alternatives, etc. etc., we've made the very difficult choice to cancel the awards banquet. It would take paragraphs to have a nuanced discussion of all the reasons, but the Cliff's Notes version is we weren't able to put together a plan for the banquet that would be cost-effective, enjoyable, and safe.

With that in mind, we'll instead be hosting an awards ceremony at the track shortly after the concours, leaving Saturday evening free. Everybody will have more time to hang out in the hotel parking lot, dine at one of the many local restaurants with outside seating (or inside seating if you prefer, Florida's restaurants are open), visit the host hotel's surprisingly decent restaurant, or jump in the hot tub with Georgia Tech. 

In order to accommodate the awards ceremony at the track, we've canceled the traditional competitor town hall for this year, too. No offense, and I promise it will return next year! Everybody is free to email me any pressing thoughts/comments/concerns after the event.

Anybody currently registered will be refunded $45 (the price of a banquet ticket) per registration. Any additional banquet tickets will be refunded in full. You should see these refunds to your original payment method within 10-14 days.

We've made a few other small changes/clarifications to the schedule, which you can view here:

https://2000challenge.com/schedule

 

As always, this is a developing situation, and this information may be updated at any time without notice. Keep an eye on the $2000 Challenge website for the most current info.

 

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
9/4/20 11:13 a.m.

Thank you for all your efforts. I can well imagine how trying all of this is.  Please continue to do what your judgement tells you is right because as I sit here I cannot find fault in any of your moves. 

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Director of Marketing & Digital Assets
9/4/20 11:18 a.m.

Oh, one other bit of good news: I'm told that after a few months of only serving "Grab and Go" breakfasts, the host hotel is again serving a normal hot breakfast. 

MrJoshua
MrJoshua UltimaDork
9/4/20 11:27 a.m.

You guys can of course host whatever you want, but I think you are going way overboard on making safety decisions for other adults who can think for themselves.

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Director of Marketing & Digital Assets
9/4/20 11:34 a.m.
MrJoshua said:

You guys can of course host whatever you want, but I think you are going way overboard on making safety decisions for other adults who can think for themselves.

Sorry, but as event hosts we're legally obligated to make safety decisions for adults. This one gives people the freedom to think for themselves: After the awards ceremony you're free to visit a local buffet, or eat takeout in your hotel room. No judgement (or decision) either way on our part. You're all adults, and you should make the decisions you feel are appropriate.

 

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/4/20 11:36 a.m.

Oh dang, this is AWESOME news. 

MrJoshua
MrJoshua UltimaDork
9/4/20 11:36 a.m.

In reply to Tom Suddard :

You are legally obligated to make decisions within the law. This decision is not law driven.

Javelin (Forum Supporter)
Javelin (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/4/20 11:39 a.m.
MrJoshua said:

You guys can of course host whatever you want, but I think you are going way overboard on making safety decisions for other adults who can think for themselves.

You are assigning blame for local, state, and Federal policies to GRM. As a business they HAVE to comply with the laws and mandates, whether or not they agree with them. Sometimes they can make it work, like hosting the Challenge at all, and other times they can't. Leave the highly charged political rhetoric at home please.

Marjorie Suddard
Marjorie Suddard General Manager
9/4/20 11:41 a.m.
MrJoshua said:

In reply to Tom Suddard :

You are legally obligated to make decisions within the law. This decision is not law driven.

Ah, we also consider ourselves bound to make ethical decisions. YMMV.

Margie

MrJoshua
MrJoshua UltimaDork
9/4/20 11:42 a.m.

In reply to Javelin (Forum Supporter) :

I live in the County that the host banquet is hosted in. As with the pro-driver decision, this decision is not law driven. 

 

Will their be a challenge lunch under the pavilion? Could something similar be done for the awards ceremony?

Cooter
Cooter UberDork
9/4/20 11:45 a.m.

When is Flounder in season in that county?

MrJoshua
MrJoshua UltimaDork
9/4/20 11:46 a.m.

In reply to Marjorie Suddard :

Views on ethics differ. You guys could ask the participants what they are willing to accept and see if you can make that work within your acceptable level of risk.

 

Ninja edit-I understand if you are unwilling to have your staff take the risk of a challenge situation, but please say so if that is driving your decisions. 

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Director of Marketing & Digital Assets
9/4/20 11:46 a.m.
MrJoshua said:

In reply to Javelin (Forum Supporter) :

I live in the County that the host banquet is hosted in. As with the pro-driver decision, this decision is not law driven. 

 

Will their be a challenge lunch under the pavilion? Could something similar be done for the awards ceremony?

Yes, the Friday dinner will still happen under the pavilion with Sonny's staff in PPE serving.

We looked into hosting the awards banquet similarly, but didn't think everybody would want to pay for the privilege to sit at the track for four hours waiting for dinner time, then eat in the hot, sweaty pavilion for two hours while we do the traditional slideshow and such. Without any alcohol, since that's not allowed. 

CJ (He's Just an FS)
CJ (He's Just an FS) HalfDork
9/4/20 11:47 a.m.

In reply to MrJoshua :

Just leave it.  We do no need another pissing match.  If you don't like the plans, don't go. 

Easy, adult decision

MrJoshua
MrJoshua UltimaDork
9/4/20 11:49 a.m.
Tom Suddard said:
MrJoshua said:

In reply to Javelin (Forum Supporter) :

I live in the County that the host banquet is hosted in. As with the pro-driver decision, this decision is not law driven. 

 

Will their be a challenge lunch under the pavilion? Could something similar be done for the awards ceremony?

Yes, the Friday dinner will still happen under the pavilion. 

We looked into hosting the awards banquet similarly, but didn't think everybody would want to pay for the privilege to sit at the track for four hours waiting for dinner time, then eat in the hot, sweaty pavilion for two hours while we do the traditional slideshow and such. Without any alcohol, since that's not allowed. 

I am glad to hear the dinner will still happen. I appreciate the effort. Is there any magazine resistance to the attendees setting up an informal gathering somewhere at the hotel?

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Director of Marketing & Digital Assets
9/4/20 11:50 a.m.

With the original awards banquet plans, we only had about a dozen people register. Registration has been open for 9 months. The appetite for the event as structured simply wasn't there. 

 

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Director of Marketing & Digital Assets
9/4/20 11:52 a.m.

In reply to MrJoshua :

You're all adults who can make your own decisions, and we can't/won't police anything you do at the hotel.

 If you're going to do that, I highly suggest walking down the street to that seafood place. The food is better and there are more big tables.

MrJoshua
MrJoshua UltimaDork
9/4/20 11:54 a.m.
Tom Suddard said:

With the original awards banquet plans, we only had about a dozen people register. Registration has been open for 9 months. The appetite for the event as structured simply wasn't there. 

 

I'm saddened to hear that. I will be registering either 1 or 2 cars if the event happens.

Lof8 - Andy
Lof8 - Andy SuperDork
9/4/20 12:04 p.m.

I have no problems with the changes.  Glad you're making the event happen at all!   Now, about those early purchased number decals.. :)

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Director of Marketing & Digital Assets
9/4/20 12:07 p.m.

In reply to Lof8 - Andy :

They'll go out in early October. :) 

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/4/20 12:13 p.m.

My money's on the Hong CTSV

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Director of Marketing & Digital Assets
9/4/20 12:21 p.m.

Yeah. With a potentially smaller field and a big prize there may be some opportunity for cherry picking here. 

SVreX (Forum Supporter)
SVreX (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/4/20 12:22 p.m.

Suggestion...

Why not do the full slide presentation and awards presentation online?

Do a proper video, a speech by JG, and all the bells and whistles via Zoom or other. 
 

Then LOTS of people can enjoy it from a distance, and learn what they are missing. It might encourage more participation next year. 
 

Use it as a marketing method to market the $2000 Challenge. 

SVreX (Forum Supporter)
SVreX (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/4/20 12:26 p.m.

Food wasn't all that great anyway. 

captdownshift (Forum Supporter)
captdownshift (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
9/4/20 12:36 p.m.

Thank you for the effort and thought put forward in making alternative arrangements to serve and entertain us as best as possible, safely, given the circumstances. 

 

Regarding the town hall, possibly an attendee only zoom meeting to occur at a later date, after decompression has occurred? If 2020 has taught me anything, it's that it could possibly be done via zoom and take 4 hours instead of the 10-15 minutes that seems that it could've been accomplished in after the fact. 

1 2 3
Our Preferred Partners
TLKQ2bVw8vYm2OyPKdPXRMMAY1FukVjGebIR52hNzGFLYNxnJP0WgJddYk23jNZ6