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ME: The Great Race Maine to Florida
June 19, 2014 - June 29, 2014
Hemmings Motor News presents Great Race – Maine to Florida – June 19 to 29th!
The Great Race is an antique, vintage, and collector car competitive controlled-speed endurance road rally on public highways. It is not a test of top speed. 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.
Q: Can you describe How the Great Race works?
A: Each day the driver and navigator team receives a set of course instructions that indicate every turn, speed change, stop, and start that the team must make throughout the day (usually 220 to 250 such instructions per day). Along the course route there will be from 4 to 7 checkpoints recording the exact time that the team passes that point. The objective is to arrive at each checkpoint at the correct time, not the fastest. The score for each team is the result of the team’s ability to follow the designated course instructions precisely. Every second off the perfect time (early or late) at each checkpoint is a penalty point. This format is much more mentally demanding than a flat-out cross-country race. Also, GPS or computers are not permitted and odometers are taped over. This is a test of human mental agility and endurance as well as classic car endurance, rather than programming capability. The course avoids timed segments on interstate highways, opting instead for scenic local, county, and state highways whenever possible through some of the prettiest country in the United States.
Q: Is there an age limit for the cars that can enter the race?
A: 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. Newer vehicles are permitted in Regional Rallies. But for the Great Race, the vehicle must be 1972 or older.
Q: Can you tell us what is included in the entry fee?
A: The entry fee pays for your entry in the rally/contest, as well as banquets, festivities and activities (such as museums). The funds are used to pay for the awards and the prize purse as well as for the logistics of the race (we’ll have 30+ volunteers and paid staff members who will be conducting all the behind the scenes logistics traveling with the tour and staying at the same hotels). Lunch is also provided for the driver/navigator teams. For those teams who also bring along a support crew and/or spouses and family, we do not permit them to follow along or drive on the course during the day, but provide them a route to allow them to go directly to the next overnight stop and wait for the team to arrive. So, those folks would need to buy their lunch. (Many support crews wind up doing some great sight-seeing along the way.) Dinner is also provided for the entire team including listed support personnel. Many of the hotels we have lined up will be providing breakfast. All other meals, snacks and such are paid for by the participants themselves. You will pay for your hotel rooms, which should be booked through the secure website provided by our designated travel agent. We have negotiated reduced rates at each of the hotels that are lower than their standard rates. We do not receive any money and have done this simply to help save our racers and their support crews money and keep everyone together in one or two hotels as much as possible. All hotels are good quality chain motels such as Hampton Inn, Radisson, Marriott, Holiday Inn, etc, and recently constructed or totally renovated.