Great Race Makes Four Wyoming Stops This Week
If you run across a number of vintage cars rolling near I-80 or along the eastern reaches of the state this week, they are there for a race unlike any other. The Great Race is an antique, vintage, and collector car competitive controlled-speed endurance road rally on public highways. Any car up through model year 1972 is eligible to enter. For purposes of scoring, the older the vehicle, the better the age factor adjustment the team will receive. It is a test of a driver/navigator team’s ability to follow precise course instructions and the car’s (and team’s) ability to endure on a cross-country trip. The course instructions require the competing teams to drive at or below the posted speed limits at all times. This years race started in San Rafael, CA and will finish up in Moline, IL on Sunday, June 26th. Along the way these cars will be passing through Wyoming and making 4 stops.
Tomorrow is Day 4 of the Great Race and will bring the racers into Wyoming. Starting at the Bonneville Salt Flats after lunch, Great Racers will cross the Great Salt Lake Desert for two hours toward Salt Lake City. Competition will take the teams across eastern Utah and 20 miles across the state line of Wyoming to the small town of Evanston, where they will be gathering at the Union Pacific Roundhouse. Evanston is the smallest overnight city on the race with a population of 12,000. The winning rally team for the day will be presented a trophy representing the Salt Flats and the speed records set there through the years.
Day 5 takes the racers to Rawlins who will host a lunch stop on Wednesday, June 22. This will bring 120 of the world’s finest antique automobiles downtown to the historic Rawlins depot. The cars will arrive in Rawlins starting at 11:50 a.m. at one-minute intervals for two hours. Then it is off to Cheyenne.
Cheyenne will be the second state capital stop on the race. The Western Writers Conference will be in Cheyenne this week as well, and more than 2,000 fiction, non-fiction and magazine writers from around the world will turn their attention to the vintage cars in this event. The winning rally team for the day will be presented a trophy featuring a bronze figure of a cowboy on a horse.
After an overnight in Cheyenne, Day 6 starts with a trip to Lusk. This community in northeast Wyoming holds the distinction of being the county seat of the least populated county in the least populated state in the country. But Lusk (population 1,600) is an active crossroads of this part of the world, and a good crowd will turn out at the fairgrounds to see the event just before the racers head into the Black Hills of South Dakota.
Each stop on the Great Race is free to the public and spectators will be able to visit with the participants and to look at the cars for several hours.