Great Race rolls into Gardnerville Sunday
The 2019 Great Race will roll into Gardnerville at 5:30 p.m. Sunday, bringing 150 of the world’s finest collector cars.
Limited solely to model years 1972 and older, the event mixes the invigorating elements of racing with the historical appreciation of vintage cars.
This year the race will coincide with Big Mama’s Car Show and Shine at Lampe Park 1-6 p.m. Sunday.
Big Mama’s is a benefit for Douglas County Meals on Wheels.
This year’s race will cover the West Coast for the first time, organizers said, running through California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington.
The 2019 Hemmings Motor News Great Race presented by Hagerty starts today, and finish is Tacoma, Wash., on June 30.
The nine-day, 2,300-mile run will bring 120 antique automobiles to 18 cities in California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington. More than $150,000 is awarded to top finishers in five divisions.
“We are excited to start the 2019 Great Race in Riverside,” Director Jeff Stumb said. “Especially with Riverside’s great connection and long history of racing at the old Riverside Raceway.”
Each stop on the Great Race is free to the public and spectators are able to visit with the participants and look at the cars for several hours. It is common for kids to climb in the cars for a closer look.
“There are more than 450 people just in our entourage from all around the world,” Stumb said. “And along the route they will see amazing sites, including Lake Tahoe, Redwood National Park, Northern California’s coastline, Crater Lake, Mount Hood and Mount Rainer.”
Teams and cars from Japan, England, Australia, Canada and every corner of the USA will meet in Riverside with vintage vehicles dating back as far as 1916.
The Great Race, which began 36 years ago, is not a speed race, but a time/speed/distance rally. The vehicles, each with a driver and navigator, are given precise instructions each day that detail every move down to the second. They are scored at check points along the way and are penalized for each second either early or late. As in golf, the lowest score wins.
A 1916 Hudson Pikes Peak Hillclimber, a 1916 Chevrolet Phaeton, a 1913 Cadillac and a 1909 Buick are the oldest cars scheduled to be in the 2019 Great Race from Riverside, California to Tacoma, Washington. In the 2018 Great Race a 1933 Ford truck won the event from Buffalo, New York to Halifax, Nova Scotia. The 2019 winners will again receive $50,000 of the $150,000 total purse.