The Huntington Area Visitors and Convention Bureau to host a lunch break during the 2021 Big Run on June 25 at Heritage Station
Huntington, W.Va., to host lunch break in 2021 Hemmings Motor News Great race presented by Hagerty Friday, June 25, the race organizers announced.
The Great Race, the world’s first classic car rally, will bring 120 of the world’s best vintage cars to town for the $ 150,000 event, with the first car entering the Heritage Station starting at 11:30 am.
An arrival ceremony with Color Guard and national anthem will take place at 11:25 am.
Each stage of the Grande Course is free for the public and spectators will be able to visit the participants and observe the cars for several hours. It’s common for kids to get into cars for a first-hand glimpse.
In total, event participants will cover more than 2,300 miles in 9 days. The start will be in front of the Alamo in San Antonio on June 19. The race will end on June 27 in Greenville, SC Teams and cars from Japan, England, Germany, Canada and all over the United States will compete in their vintage automobiles dating as far back as 1916 “There are over 500 people around the world who are taking part in this incredible adventure,” said director Jeff Stumb. Along the course, competitors will pass through 10 states – Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.
The Grande Course, which started 38 years ago, is not a speed race, but a time / speed / distance rally. The vehicles, each with a driver and a navigator, receive precise instructions every day that detail each movement down to the second. They are marked at secret checkpoints en route and are penalized one second for every second early or late. Like in golf, the lowest score wins.
Cars start and end hopefully a minute apart if all goes as planned. Most of the challenge, aside from staying on time and following directions, is getting an old car to the finish line every day, organizers say. Cars built in 1974 and earlier are eligible, with most entries made before WWII. In the 2019 Great Race, a 1916 Hudson won the event from Riverside, Calif. To Tacoma, WA. The 2021 winners will once again receive $ 50,000 out of a total of $ 150,000. A 1916 Hudson Pikes Peak Hillclimber and a 1917 Peerless race car are the oldest cars set to compete in the 2021 Great Race this summer.
Over the decades, the Big Race has stopped in hundreds of cities, large and small, from tiny Austin, Nevada, to New York City. “When the Big Race comes to a city, it becomes an instant festival,” Stumb said. “Last year we had a few overnight stops with over 10,000 spectators en route for 250,000 people to see the Great Race during the event.” The event was started in 1983 by Tom McRae and it takes its name from the 1965 film, The great race, which starred Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon, Natalie Wood and Peter Falk. The film is a comedy based on the actual 1908 auto race from New York to Paris. In 2004, Tony Curtis was the guest of the Great Race and drove in his car from the movie Leslie Special.
The big race was a huge success thanks to late night screenings on ESPN when the network had just started in the early 1980s. The first participant, Curtis Graf of Irving, TX, is still a participant today. . The main sponsors of the event are Hemmings Motor News, Hagerty, Coker Tire and reliable carriers.
Locally, the lunch stop is sponsored by Huntington Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, Huntington Regional Antique Automobile Club of America, Greater Huntington Parks & Recreation District, Shops at Heritage Station and HoneyBaked Ham Barboursville.