Next year’s PoCo Grand Prix presented by Dominion Lending Centres has been confirmed for Friday July 14, kicking off the planning for what is expected to be one of Port Coquitlam’s premier events in 2017.
This year’s inaugural event on July 15 attracted more than 5,000 spectators to downtown Port Coquitlam for a day of professional cycling, live entertainment and free family activities. As part of BC Superweek – Canada’s largest professional road cycling series – the PoCo Grand Prix will be one of five events taking place throughout Metro Vancouver from July 7 to 16 in 2017.
“The PoCo Grand Prix was a fantastic showcase for our city, not to mention our great businesses and community spirit,” Mayor Greg Moore said. “In the coming months, we’ll be working closely with our businesses and residents to build on the successes of 2016 and ensure an even better experience for everyone in 2017 and the years to come.”
Highlights from last year’s event include:
- More than 5,000 spectators, plus 2,500 who streamed the event live,
- More than 250 riders, who provided positive feedback both about the event and the 1.3-kilometre street course (considered to be challenging and fast),
- More than 200 individual volunteers and community groups, filling more than 300 volunteer roles,
- Twenty-six sponsors, with strong support from local and regional businesses,
- A five-year commitment from presenting sponsor Dominion Lending Centres,
- Twenty-nine Grand Prix Expo vendors,
- Twenty-two teams of four in the Corporate Challenge relay,
- More than 200 entries in the Kids’ Race, and
- High public attendance for event-day activities such as the Kids’ Zone, children’s entertainment, beer garden and live entertainment stage.
“We’re spreading the news now about next year’s July 14 date to make sure people plan for it when booking their summer holidays,” said Cllr. Darrell Penner, chair of the city’s Health Community Committee. “This is a world-class event that takes place right in our community, and you don’t want to miss it.”
BC Superweek Race Director Mark Ernsting said the 2016 PoCo Grand Prix exceeded all expectations in its inaugural year.
“We were thrilled with the course, the spectator attendance, the rider feedback, and the support from sponsors and the community,” Ernsting said. “We’re confident the 2017 event will be even better.”
Earlier this fall, city staff completed a thorough review of the 2016 event and identified ways to improve for next year. For example, the city has already started working with the Port Coquitlam Business Improvement Association and downtown businesses to find ways to reduce the impact and increase their involvement and benefit. Businesses are invited to learn more at an Open House on January 18 at 6:30-8 p.m. at the Gathering Place, 220-2253 Leigh Square Place, Port Coquitlam.
The city will also work to maximize the event’s revenue generation opportunities, through increased advertising, expanded sponsorship and other methods.
Due to increased interest from sponsors for next year, an even wider range of sponsorship and participation opportunities will be available for businesses for 2017. These include exclusive naming rights, business team entries in the Corporate Challenge relay, both cash and in-kind contributions, the Grand Prix Expo tradeshow, and various other opportunities designed to enable businesses of all size to be involved.
Based on the sponsorship level, rewards may include advance promotions, on-site signage and banners, display space, PA announcements and private viewing space. A major highlight for last year’s sponsors was admission to the exclusive track-side VIP experience, which features free food and beverages all day, prime viewing near the start/finish line, viewing screens and a social setting to network with other business and community leaders.
Sponsorship questions may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or to Graham Danziger at 604-927-5218.
Volunteers will again play a significant role in the 2016 PoCo Grand Prix, and many of last year’s volunteers have pledged to return in 2017 based on their positive experience. Volunteer registrations for next year’s event have already begun through www.pocograndprix.ca/volunteer, and questions may be directed to email@example.com or to Rob Loxterkamp at 604-927-7953.
Event, volunteer and sponsorship information can be found at www.pocograndprix.ca.