The 2020 Hemmings Motor News Great Race presented by Hagerty Driver’s Club has been rescheduled for June of 2021 due to concerns over the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, race organizers announced.
The annual event, which features cars dating back to 1909 in a time-speed-distance rally across the country, will still start in San Antonio, Texas, and end in Greenville, South Carolina. The dates for the 2021 race will be June 19-27, and the start will still be in front of the Alamo.
“We believe that postponing the event is the responsible decision with the conditions and restrictions we are facing,” said race director Jeff Stumb.
The Great Race had already been rescheduled from its usual late June dates to late August, but the recent surge in the number of virus cases in states like Texas made it impossible to guarantee that the event could be held safely, organizers said.
Every race team who had a spot in the 2020 Great Race will be guaranteed a spot in the 2021 event. “We will continue to focus on ways we can enhance the participant experience as we move closer,” Stumb said. Teams come from as far away as Japan, England, Australia, Canada and from every corner of the United States. “We are still looking forward to visiting all of the great cities we had lined up, and we are going to brand the 2021 Great Race as the ‘Most Anticipated Great Race Ever.”
“The safety and well-being of our competitors, staff and patrons are of the utmost importance to our sponsors Hemmings, Hagerty Driver’s Club, Coker Tire and Reliable Carriers,” said Legendary Companies CEO Wade Kawasaki. “While it is disappointing, we all agreed rescheduling this year’s event is the right thing to do, and we are looking forward to 2021 when we can all gather to celebrate the rich history of the Great Race.”
The nine-day, 2,300-mile adventure will bring 120 antique automobiles to 19 cities in Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina. More than a total purse of $150,000 will be awarded to top finishers in multiple divisions.
Overnight cities along the 2021 route are scheduled to include Temple, Texas; Ardmore, Okla.; Joplin, Mo.; Cape Girardeau, Mo.; Owensboro, Ky.; Lexington, Ky.; Beckley, W.Va.; and Mooresville, N.C. Lunch cities are scheduled to include San Marcos, Texas; Granbury, Texas; Sapulpa, Okla.; Rolla, Mo.; Paducah, Ky.; Elizabethtown, Ky.; Huntington, W.Va.; and Galax, Va.
Last year, a 1916 Hudson won the event from Riverside, Calif., to Tacoma, Wash. The 2021 winners will again receive $50,000 of the $150,000+ total purse.