One of the 97 teams in this year’s Hemmings Motor News Great Race presented by Hagerty will take home a $50,000 check when they cross the finish line on Dauphin Street in downtown Mobile, Alabama and will be crowned 2013 Grand Champions.
The event will start Saturday, June 22, in St. Paul, Minnesota, and work its way 2,100 miles down the Mississippi River over nine days in the world’s richest vintage car rally. “I can’t think of a better way to cap off the month of June than to win $50,000,” race director Jeff Stumb said.
No one will know who the winner will be until the teams cross the finish line on June 30 in Mobile. More than $150,000 in total prize money will be handed out that day, including the three division champions.
The Grand Champion Division is made up exclusively of former winners, while the Expert Division features top money winners through the years who have not won the event. The Sportman Division is made up of rookie teams and those just getting the hand of Speed/Time/Distance rallies. A fourth group is called the X-Cup division and is made up of high school and college teams competing for scholarship money.
“The Great Race draws thousands and thousands of spectators to each stop along the route because it is the most unique event in motorsports,” Stumb said. “They will see nearly 100 of the most impressive antique cars in America – and they don’t have to go to a museum to see them; the cars come right to Main Street after hundreds of miles in competition each day.”
More than 60,000 spectators are expected at the Fairgrounds in St. Paul during the Back to the 50s Weekend and they will witness the start of the incredible adventure through 10 states. Racers will cross the Mississippi River 12 times along the way.
Last year’s Grand Champions were Barry and Irene Jason of Keller, Texas, in their 1935 Ford Coupe. In 2011, the oldest car to ever enter the Great Race at the time, a 1911 Velie, won the title with Howard and Doug Sharp of Fairport, New York, on board.
The 2013 event will feature some of the best antique cars in the country from a 1913 Premier to a 1969 Camaro. Other cars of note are a 1916 Hudson Indy race car, a 1917 Peerless and a 1920 Ford Model T.
Overnight stops on the race include La Crosse, Wisconsin; Davenport, Iowa; Hannibal, Missouri; Cape Girardeau, Missouri; Germantown, Tennessee; Vicksburg, Mississippi; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; and Covington, Louisiana.
The lunch stops include Eau Claire, Wisconsin; Dubuque, Iowa; Peoria. Illinois; Washington, Missouri; Paragould, Arkansas; Monticello, Arkansas; Natchez, Mississippi; and Crowley, Louisiana.