PENTICTON - The Challenge banner could disappear from Penticton streets if city council approves a request for an amendment of the Challenge Triathlon agreement at tomorrow’s council meeting.
Challenge brand holder Michael Brown, who is scheduled to appear as a delegation at tomorrow’s, Sept. 19, committee of the whole meeting, has approached the city indicating his intent to cancel his arrangement with the Challenge family.
A report to council says Brown will continue to organize a triathlon event in late August for the next two years, but wishes to change the brand of the event.
Following the final Ironman race in the city in 2012, the Penticton Triathlon Society staged the initial two Challenge Penticton races, with Brown’s company awarded the license in 2014.
Part of Brown’s agreement to stage the Challenge Penticton race from 2015 to 2019, includes a contribution of $110,000 value-in-kind to the race in return for Brown making five annual payments of $60,000 to the city.
He also signed a separate agreement that brought the International Triathlon Union Multisport Championships to Penticton in August.
Brown’s commitment for the next two years also includes participant numbers of between 900 and 1,500 racers for each event.
Mayor Andrew Jakubeit says the request to council is about Brown getting out of his agreement with Challenge, making the city aware of it, and getting permission before finalizing a new offering.
Coun. Helena Konanz says she’s glad Brown is committed to running a major triathlon event in the city as it is Penticton’s tradition.
“With the success of the ITU event this summer, the momentum needs to continue into next summer,” she said in an email Sept. 18, adding Brown’s relationship with the Challenge family is his business.
“If he has permission to break ties with them, then I’m sure Mr. Brown will make certain he will replace it with an alternative successful event for the city,” she said.
The city consulted legal council to find out what potential legal ramifications the amendment might hold, noting there were some minor legal risks that could be mitigated by Brown.
Staff is recommending council approve the amendment to the Challenge Triathlon agreement.
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