The Motor State Challenge celebrated its 10th anniversary last weekend. The July 19-21 Pro-Touring event brought together 102 drivers from 18 states seeking fun and bragging rights.
The Motor State Challenge features vintage, late model, and touring classes. The event featured a scenic 25-minute cruise starting at Motor State’s headquarters in Watervliet, Michigan on July 19, road course racing at GingerMan Raceway in South Haven, Michigan on July 20, and autocross at the Tire Rack in South Bend, Indiana on July 21.
“They were calling for rain all day (July 21). We managed four (autocross) runs in the morning before it rained and two in the afternoon with a little rain,” said Bob Bertelsen, who participated in the Motor State Challenge, driving his 1968 Corvette Stingray named the Green Mamba (see Bertelsen’s road course run in the above video). “Green Mamba performed really well. The Scoggin Dickey Engine ran strong. The grip and turning ability of the BFG Rivals, Forgline wheels and Detroit Speed Suspension just worked really well. The Baer Brakes really stopped the car when needed. The Bowler Prepared Tremec T56 transmission shifted flawlessly.”
The cruise on July 19 passed along the lakeshore in St. Joseph, before returning to Watervliet. A BBQ dinner awaited the drivers upon their return, and the evening was spent enjoying great conversation, food, and making any last-minute adjustments and preparations.
The morning of July 20 kicked off under overcast skies at GingerMan Raceway, and after tech inspection by the South Bend Region SCCA, the drivers took to the track for timed lap sessions. The rain held off until mid-afternoon, allowing all drivers to get in several rounds of road course racing on GingerMan’s highly technical track. Drivers wrapped up the day’s events swapping stories and comparing notes over Sherman’s ice cream.
The competition resumed July 21 with autocross at the Tire Rack in South Bend. In a true test of driver skill and car agility, each participant made several timed passes on the course, trying to shave seconds while avoiding the dreaded cone penalties.
As storms passed on either side of the event, the track stayed mostly dry, and the heavy rain held off until every driver had gotten all of their passes in.
Motor State Distributing’s Marketing Director Scott Wahlstrom presented the awards, as well as a large number of product certificates from the many industry sponsors that help make the Motor State Challenge possible.
“Motor State Distributing would like to extend our appreciation to everyone who participated,” he said, “and to all of the volunteers, organizations, and vendors who support the Motor State Challenge.”