A road trip over seven thousand kilometers of highway, across the second largest country in the world. A trip from Victoria, BC to St John’s, NL, in cars which you’d barely trust to make it across the city, let alone the country. This is legend in the making. This is the Trans-Canada Cup Run.
The Trans-Canada Cup Run draws inspiration from two events: the cup runs held between UVic/UBC and UofA/UofC, and the University of Canterbury’s Undie 500 rally. A “cup run” is an event where two schools share a trophy cup which they use to call the other school to their events within a limited time frame. The Undie 500 Rally is an infamous event where Kiwi engineering students from Christchurch travel to Dunedin in vehicles which cost less than $500 for a weekend of mayhem. It is also partially influenced by the TV series Top Gear.
The concept for the Trans-Canada Cup Run was dreamed up by a slightly inebriated UVic engineering student at an industry conference in Ottawa. The goal is simple: every year or two, a delegation from either UVic or the Memorial University of Newfoundland must commence a road trip to visit the other school. The schools shall alternate in this responsibility.
Oh God, Why?
- UVic is the farthest west engineering school in Canada, MUN is the farthest east.
- Victoria is the western terminus of the Trans-Canada Highway, whereas St. John’s is the eastern terminus.
- Both schools have similar enrollment numbers in their engineering programs and universities.
- The two schools are members of a group of only three schools in Canada with mandatory co-op. This co-op program results in an identical schedule with split A and B streams, which is highly unique. The streams are even currently in sync (even numbered graduation years are A stream grads, odd numbered years are B stream grads).
- Both schools have two votes in their respective regional associations (WESST and ACES) which annoy other societies to no end.
Clearly, these factors demand a serious tradition be established between the schools in the form of a massive road trip.
- Participant vehicles must cost $500 or less. Upon completion, they either will be given to the other school for undertaking the journey later, or sold/scrapped upon departure by air.
- The lead car must carry the Trans-Canada Cup. This cup is to be filled with seawater from the sending school. The cup cannot be capped. Upon arrival, the amount of seawater will be measured, and drinks will be earned/owed based on how much spilled.
- The convoy must follow the Trans-Canada Highway from Victoria to St. John’s. This means no shortcuts like taking the Swartz Bay Ferry (must take Departure Bay) or the Coquihalla (must take the Fraser Canyon).
- No society funds are to be used for the cup run. Participants should pay for the event from their own pockets.