If it’s not Covid, it’s the weather.

From days out, the organisers of the Papakaio 8-Hour Mountain Bike Challenge knew the weather forecast was not looking favourable for the weekend, but they were hoping the forecast was wrong.

The organising committee had left no box unticked to ensure it could run the event safely under the Covid-19 Red traffic light regulations, but the weather was the one thing out of its control. The committee had no choice but to cancel the event on Saturday morning, when the tracks were deemed to dangerous to ride.

Spokeswoman Rebecca Finlay said it had taken plenty of work to figure out how to continue to run the Papakaio School fundraiser, and still have it ‘‘feel like 8-Hour’’.

‘‘We were just really determined to not take the easy way out and cancel it,’’ Mrs Finlay said.

‘‘So even when we saw the weather forecast, we were just really determined to hold it, right up until the moment that Stuey [track builder Brett Stuart] came back from riding the track for the second time, on Saturday morning . . .and said, ‘This isn’t going to be safe’.’’

The nature of mountain biking meant it came with an element of risk, she said.

‘‘But we felt like holding a competitive race in an environment where our medics are already kind of overworked and overstressed, it tipped into being irresponsible to continue.’’

The track would have been no better on Sunday, which had been tagged as a possible ‘‘rain day’’ back-up, and because so many people had been called on to give up their time and resources, it was not an option to schedule it for another weekend.

‘‘We just had to cancel,’’ Mrs Finlay said.

‘‘We’re so disappointed. . . every year, when I’ve looked around the event village, just before people arrive, I’ve had this overwhelming sense of collective pride and achievement, and I thought maybe I wouldn’t feel quite like that this year, because it was so much smaller. But it still had that wonderful sort of warm, friendly — we’d still managed to generate that atmosphere.

‘‘I was really excited about running it, just, you know, a pure and simple bike race. So yeah, it was really disappointing.’’

The track builders and committee were determined for the track to be ridden, and were going to run open days, starting on February 27 (weather permitting).

People could ride it in their own time and at their own risk, from 10am, with parking in the Hurst Holdings car park. Updates would be provided on social media.

A date for next year’s event had been set for February 18, and the committee would be in touch with all riders and sponsors of this year’s race to discuss their options.