Today was all Michigan, all the time! We’re spending a few days rallying up, down and across Michigan, on our way to a finish line in Traverse City. But today’s trek took up from our starting point in Ypsilanti into the heart of some rush hour traffic on the speedometer calibration run. Then, we peeled off the highway for some VERY short rally legs–we’re talking 4 or 5 maneuvers and then a check point. There was a total of nine checkpoints today, making for another tricky day. It certainly kept the racers on their toes. Our lunch stop was held at the outstanding Stahls Automotive Museum in Chesterfield Township, Michigan. Ted and Mary Stahl (and their children) are huge supporters of the Great Race, in terms of racing teams and sponsorships, so it was great to spend a little time at their place. A great turnout of folks and classic cars came out to cheer on the racers, as they near the final days of competition. Racers and staff were treated to a delicious meal, complete with a wide range of desserts. The Stahl collection is truly amazing, with Cords, Packards, Auburns and more on display. One of the most interesting aspects of the collection are the automated musical instruments, and one vehicle in particular stuck out to us–the Thomas Flyer. This is a real deal car, purchased from the Harold Coker collection.
After we got back on the road, the route took us through miles of countryside, and featured some loops and mazes along the way. Finally, it was time for a big finish to Day 7 and we did just that with a spectacular crowd in downtown Frankenmuth, Michigan. We had a special guest stop by today, and he’ll be with us for the rest of the race…that guest is Wayne Carini, a great friend of Corky Coker and the star of “Chasing Classic Cars” on Velocity.
Today, we said goodbye to Mike Goodman, our main announcer for this year’s race. He filled in for MotorMouth, and with Corky Coker, Jeff Stumb and Jason White by his side to give him a break. Mike had to run back home to Tennessee for a previous arrangement, so Corky, Jeff and Jason will be your announcers for the rest of our journey. Tomorrow, we continue our northward trek, with a lunch stop at Bay View Park in Alpena, Michigan, and then an overnight stop in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. Follow along as we get down to the nitty gritty and see who’s gonna win this thing!