YPSILANTI, MI (February 23, 2017) – Ypsilanti, Mich., will welcome participants from the 2017 Hemmings Motor News Great Race presented by Hagerty Insurance on Thursday June 29 for an overnight stop in Depot Town.
Spectators are encouraged to interact with participants and get a closer look at the vintage automobiles as racers pour into Depot Town at 5 p.m.
Participants will travel over 2,100 miles in nine days along the historic Dixie Highway, from Jacksonville, FL to Traverse City, MI. Each team will consist of a driver and one passenger, tested on their ability to navigate the route and maintain an assigned speed.
The Great Race is an endurance rally designed to complement the capabilities and condition of vintage cars. Teams will be required to follow detailed instructions to reach each check point in a timely manner; failure to do so can all affect a team’s score and eligibility.
The team with the lowest cumulative score will be awarded the title of “Grand Champion” and $50,000 of the $150,000 total purse. Though first place has the largest payout, the “Spirit of the Event” award is one of the most sought after prizes of the event, used to honor teams who demonstrate their dedication and enthusiasm during the race.
The Great Race has built a significant following over the years, creating a festival-like affair for cities fortunate enough to be involved in the race. Hickory Corners, Chesterfield, Frankenmuth, Alpena, and Salt Ste. Marie are additional Michigan cities scheduled to host competitors for a meal or overnight stay.
“Their arrival is cause for celebration,” said Mary Kerr, President and CEO of the Washtenaw County Convention and Visitors Bureau. “Visitors and residents alike are eager to celebrate automotive history and engage with the contestants.”
The city of Ypsilanti can expect to see Hudson vehicles, similar to the ones displayed at the Ypsilanti Auto Heritage Museum, that were built as early as 1916. A 1916 Hudson Four Passenger Speedster and Hudson Hillclimber will be among other remarkable vehicles in Depot Town.
The Ypsilanti Auto Heritage Museum was the last operational Hudson dealership. In honor of the museum’s storied history and the connection to the Great Race, Ypsilanti Auto Heritage Museum staff will host the Great Race participants for dinner to celebrate this remarkable event.
Residents can expect Cross St. to be closed from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. when participants retire to the Kensington Hotel.
The Great Race is the world’s oldest and richest vintage car rally with a mission to get antique cars out of museums and back on the road. The race is viewed by hundreds of thousands of spectators as the cars trek across the backroads of America each summer, competing for the $50,000 first-prize check, which goes to the most precise team over the entire 2,400-mile, 9-day event.
The Washtenaw County Convention and Visitors Bureau is a 501 (c)6 not-for-profit organization whose mission is to enhance the economy of the Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti areas, and the county of Washtenaw in general, through promotion of the area as a destination for overnight and day visitors. Follow Visit Ann Arbor and Ypsi Real on social media for more information about attractions and events in the Ypsilanti area.