The Hemmings Motor News Great Race presented by Hagerty has set all kinds of records the last four years, and Oct. 1 it surpassed 80 entries for the 2015 trek along Route 66. That is the earliest date the Great Race has ever hit 80 entries.
That leaves less than 20 spots for the event which will start in Kirkwood, Missouri, on Saturday, June 20. Everyone knows we only take 100 cars because it is a rally and the cars are competing a minute apart which spreads out the field almost two hours, director Jeff Stumb said. Once we announced the route the checks started pouring in because no one wanted to miss Route 66, he said. Its two bucket list items that can get crossed off at the same time. X-Cup entries for high school and college teams are not counted toward the grand total.
For the third straight year, the Great Race will have a purse of $150,000, including $50,000 to the winning team. Cars built in 1972 and earlier are eligible, and the 2014 race was won by a couple from Texas, Barry and Irene Jason, in a 1966 Mustang the first post-war car to ever win.
Stumb encourages anyone who is planning to enter the Great Race to go ahead and do so to keep from getting left out. There are a couple of dozen regular veteran teams that have not entered as of this moment, and they are risking being left at home. It is very possible with the way things have been going that we will get 20 additional entries by the end of October.
The 2015 Great Race will have 21 promoted stops all but three are in original Route 66 towns. The start in Kirkwood just outside of St. Louis will be on Route 66 through the middle of town. Other promoted stops on Route 66 will be in Rolla, Missouri; Springfield, Missouri; Clearemore, Oklahoma; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Elk City, Oklahoma; Amarillo, Texas; Tucumcari, New Mexico; Santa Fe, New Mexico; Rio Rancho, New Mexico; Albuquerque, New Mexico; Gallup, New Mexico; Holbrook, Arizona; Flagstaff, Arizona; Kingman, Arizona; Oatman, Arizona; San Bernardino, California; and Santa Monica, California.
In addition, the Friday, June 19, practice rally the day before the race begins, will take place in Illinois on Route 66.