Premier vintage sports car tour sets concours d’non-elegance for September 15th.
The 2018 edition of the Colorado Grand, the world-renowned charity tour for vintage sports cars, will end in Vail on Saturday morning, September 15th, with a showing of the cars, just as they finished the 1,000-mile drive, at Lions Head.
Last year’s Grand donated over $500,000 to charities and communities along its route, bringing the event’s total cumulative donations to more than $6 million. Substantial amounts were presented to such organizations as:
The Colorado State Patrol Family Foundation, serving families of fallen troopers with loans, grants, and scholarships.
The Robert Sutherland Foundation, treating victims of bipolar disorder.
Flight For Life, the vital mountain-based helicopter medical-rescue program.
Each year more than 25 other grass-roots charities and small towns receive grants ranging from $5,000 upward. In addition, the 2018 Grand is awarding five $8,000 college scholarships to graduating high-school seniors in the lunch-stop towns of Encampment (Wyoming), Hotchkiss, Meeker, Walden, and Vail. Typically, the Grand helps communities purchase emergency medical equipment, improve senior services, or fund special projects.
Beginning and ending in Vail each September–amid vivid fall colors–the event draws 95 pre-1960 sports cars and their drivers from around the world. Founded in 1989 by historic sports-car enthusiast Bob Sutherland, the five-day tour forms a rolling museum for rural Colorado communities. The 2018 Grand leaves Vail on Tuesday, September 11th, and ends there on the 15th. At the small-town lunches, local residents serve home cooking in parks and community centers. This year’s entrants also enjoyed coffee stops at the C Lazy U Ranch, the North Park Medical Center, the Carpenter Ranch, Cedaredge, and Paonia’s Paradise Theater. Enthusiasts from throughout Colorado can check out the cars and talk with drivers during the relaxed concours d’non-elegance at Lions Head in Vail.
The 2018 Grand includes 18 pre-war cars, including 5 Alfa Romeos, 9 Bentleys, and 2 MGs. Post-war cars include 21 1950s Ferraris, 8 Mercedes-Benz 300SLs, and 6 Aston Martins plus rare models from Abarth, Allard, Arnolt-Bristol, Bocar, Bugatti, Cunningham, Devin, Lancia, Maserati, Osca, Porsche, Scarab, Siata, Talbot-Lago, and more.
Entrants are attracted by the relaxed atmosphere; with no timed competition, drivers and navigators can stop along the way, swap cars with friends, enjoy the view at scenic sites, or explore local antique stores. Each night, entrants stay in luxury hotels and enjoy camaraderie over dinner; each day a luggage truck and experienced mechanics provide help as needed. The Colorado State Patrol provides motorcycle escorts, creating a great synergy among automotive enthusiasts, the Patrol, and local residents.
The scenic 1,000-mile route, which changes each year, covers challenging, lightly-traveled scenic mountain byways through the Colorado Rockies. After four days of driving, the cars appear in an informal show in Vail just as they finished, replete with bugs, mud, and oil stains.
Sponsors for 2018 include Mercedes-Benz USA’s Classic Center, WeatherTech, Hagerty Insurance, RM-Sotheby Auctions, and Passport Transport. The 2019 event, planned for mid-September, will include Telluride, Gunnison, Aspen, Durango, and a drive over the Million-Dollar Highway. Entry information is available at www.co1000.com; entry deadline is May 1st, 2019.
For more information, contact Frank Barrett, 303/237-0911, fdb912@gmail.com.
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