Eganville – Fans of oval snowmobile racing will have to wait at least until 2023 to get their local fix of excitement as the Eganville Sno-Drifters announced the cancellation of the 2022 Bonnechere Cup on Tuesday.

The 47th running for the coveted Bonnechere Cup had been tentatively planned for February 18 -20 but due to mounting concerns regarding COVID, the decision was made by club directors in late December to cancel this year’s event.

“After careful consideration of the current uncertainties surrounding COVID-19 and the risks that it may pose to the community, the Eganville Sno-Drifters have decided to postpone the 2022 Bonnechere Cup again this year,” the release stated. “We are very grateful for the continued support of our sponsors, volunteers, community partners, participants and fans and it is our hope that we will be back in 2023 to celebrate the 47th Bonnechere Cup.

“We wish everyone a safe and happy 2022,” it concluded.

This marks the second straight year the popular event that draws racers and fans from across Canada and the eastern United States has been cancelled. In 2020, Tom Olson of Lodi, Wisconsin took home the coveted Bonnechere Cup title.

Cindy Brash, a director with the Sno-Drifters, said the decision was not an easy one, but with the uncertainty of COVID, it was felt it was the right choice. She said an earlier race in Beausejour, Manitoba saw a significant drop in attendance, noting it is hard for the American drivers to cross the border right now with the restrictions that are in place. She said the Ontario Snowmobile Oval Racing organization would have once again handled the Vintage events and the International Snowmobile Racing federation would have handled the Champ classes.