perhaps their plan is to drive those folks with the money to show up in person (and drop serious coin) to watch the events?

The rest of us can eat .... uh, cake?

Perhaps the organizers finally admitted to themselves they can't make this profitable bringing it to the (cheapskate) masses, so they'll change course and focus the effort on hobknobbing with the uber-wealthy (who could possibly put a team together sometime in the future?)

For the rest of us who still look for carbon/foil porn there is always the C-class cup...