Great Race X-Cup Team
"$56 for the '56"
Support our 2019 Great Race Team
Alfred State College will send a qualified team of students to compete in the 2019 Great Race this June. This will be the fifth year in a row that a team from the college not only participates in the premier classic car event in the world, but provides expertise and repair skills to any of the 140 other teams from around the world in the event their vehicle has trouble. Five students will drive and navigate in the X-Cup division reserved for school-based teams. After four years of driving the college 1953 Dodge Power Wagon wrecker over the 2,300 mile event, this year a shiny black 1956 Mercury Medalist will join the team.
What is the Great Race?
The Great Race is an antique, vintage, and collector car competitive controlled-speed endurance road rally on public highways. This year, the annual rally begins June 22 in Riverside, CA, and continues for 2,300 miles before ending June 30 in Tacoma, WA. The event tests teams’ abilities to follow precise course instructions and their vehicle’s ability to endure on a cross-country trip. The score for each team is the result of the team’s ability to follow the designated course instructions precisely. Every second off the perfect time (early or late) at each checkpoint is a penalty point. Fewest points win! Cell phones, GPS or trip computers are not permitted and odometers are taped over. Alfred State teams have earned a number of "aces" (perfect times) on individual legs of previous rallies.
Why do we do it?
1. Although much of our day is spent with the latest technology learning to repair complex automotive systems, many of our students are fascinated with classic cars. Alfred State has one of the largest Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) student chapters in the nation. The Great Race provides an opportunity for some club members to follow their passion in the national spotlight.
2. The Alfred State Automotive program is ranked #4 in the Northeast. That's not good enough. The event gives the Auto Trades Department national exposure to expand our recruitment base and show prospective students and their parents that we are dedicated to the world of cars. Contacts made through the Great Race and AACA have resulted in over $20,000 in student scholarships in the last three years.
3. Participation in the event changes lives. Every year, a fresh group of students travels to places they have never been and meet people they would never have met. The students assist other teams by helping to repair their classic cars almost every night, making new friends along the way. The Great Race is a once-in-a-lifetime experience!
What about the "56"?
The 1956 Mercury Medalist is a classic fifties hot rod with a stock 312 C.I. V-8 and a three speed standard transmission. It is owned by Jim Claire, an active member of the Chemung Valley Region AACA.
So who needs some help?
That would be five Alfred State students and their faculty adviser, Greg Traugh. Jacob Derk and Jordan Dunning are Truck and Diesel seniors who competed in the 2018 Great Race from Buffalo to Nova Scotia. Jacob Minkle is a mechanical engineering student, and Caryl Koch and Hunter Mayne are Motorsports students. All upstate New York residents, they are the members of this year's team and they're either still in college or just graduated. That means they're on a budget. Hotels, meals, travel expenses and parts all add up. All funds for the trip are raised by the team. You can help support these young men and the classic car hobby by joining together and making a donation to the cause.
To donate, click on the "Donate Now" button. When the donor form comes up, click on The Great Race in the drop-down box. Thank You!
Prof. Mike Ronan, Great Race team adviser