City of Victor Harbor to apply for 2019 Tour Down Under stage start or finish

City of Victor Harbor mayor Graham Philp presents a gift to stage three winner Elia Viviani at the 2018 Tour Down Under. Photo: Dani Brown.
City of Victor Harbor mayor Graham Philp presents a gift to stage three winner Elia Viviani at the 2018 Tour Down Under. Photo: Dani Brown.

If everything goes how elected members hope, the City of Victor Harbor will again host part of the Tour Down Under in 2019.

At the council meeting on February 26, councillors decided to lodge a formal expression of interest with Events South Australia to host a stage start or finish, with the BUPA Challenge Tour, for next year’s tour.

The decision included a commitment of $39,000 in the 2018-19 budget to pay for the delivery of the event, should it go ahead.

Victor Harbor has hosted the tour eight times since 2008, including stage three of this year’s race which started in Glenelg.

At the council meeting, elected members commented on how popular this year’s event was, but also noted it was an “expensive” event to be a part of.

“To me, it is good, there is no argument; but I just think it is very expensive considering we’re at the end of the road,” councillor Peter Charles said.

Councillor Terry Andrews said although it may seem costly, it was worth it.

“The amount of television that goes worldwide does give us a showcase of Victor Harbor. At the end of the day, it puts the name of South Australia and possibly Victor Harbor as a tourist destination,” he said.

Although she didn’t attend the race, councillor Pat Chigwidden watched the “whole event” on television and was “very impressed” with the extensive coverage.

In an attempt to save money, councillor Tim Glazbrook said the council could consider applying to host a stage start or finish every second year.

“Maybe we could link with Alexandrina Council or Yankalilla council to still have it in the region and share the coast,” Cr Glazbrook said.

Councillor Moira Jenkins was disappointed by the lack of patronage main street businesses had on the day and said council should help with that next year, should it receive a start or finish.

“We may need to work together so people go into the main street and stay an extra day after the bikes go through,” Cr Jenkins said.

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