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Hemmings hosts lunch for the 2018 Great Race

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Competitors have exactly 60 minutes from arrival to eat lunch and depart, making for scenes like this one as the no. 46 Plymouth Bluesmobile of Dennis O’Connell and Stephen Hebert and the no. 17 Packard 120 of Brett and Noah Stahl arrive at the same time Berry and Jewel Jacobs are departing in their no. 53 Chevrolet pickup. Photos by the writer.

A lunch stopover is a real treat for the communities where the Great Race passes through. Hemmings’ hometown of Bennington, Vermont, was the site of one such lunch stop on June 25, 2018, when all 117 competitors in this year’s race pulled into the parking lot of Hemmings HQ. Racers were fed sandwiches and cookies, and the numerous car folk who stopped by got to feast on free popcorn from the Hemmings Model AA popcorn truck and could purchase delicious food from local vendor Nan Z Carts and Catering. The other senses received a real feast as well, with vintage vehicles all around including racers, those from the Hemmings collection, and interested locals and semi-locals scoping out the scene from the comforts of their own oldies.


Please enjoy this gallery of scenes from the 2018 Great Race stopover at Hemmings!


Hemmings rolled out a part of its museum fleet to make room for the lunch tables inside, and to provide even more eye candy for racers and fans.


The local fire department provided an honor guard, and the national anthem was sung.


The no. 4 1932 Ford Victoria is the mount of David Reeder and Sawyer Stone.


Harald von Langsdorff and Steve McKelvie were in the no. 6 Mercedes 350 SLC.


Lucky no. 7, a Ford Mustang, contains Erin and Brad Kaplan.


Hemmings’ own Jim Menneto and Stephanie Sigot were forward thinking, fueling up the no. 9 Ford Speedster before consuming lunch themselves.


We were intrigued by the side-curtain-like windscreen on the no. 10 Ford Model A containing Kirk and Scott Thams.


No. 12 contained Annegret Reichman and Ulrich Kammholz. It’s a 1955 Studebaker President.


Early Mustangs seem to be a popular choice for Great Racers, including no. 16 here, with Kari Schives and Kaitlyn Stahl aboard.


This Auburn Phaeton, containing Brad Phillips and Dan Stahl, was no. 18.


The patriotically themed no. 19 speedster carried Josh Hull and Trevor Stahl.


Brian Blood and Steve Keller seemed to be shedding no tears as their no. 23 Saab 96 pulled in.


Ed Foster and Roger Kicklighter brought this handsome 1940 Ford Standard Tudor, no. 26.


A Chevrolet Baby Grand is a rare sight these days, but that’s exactly what Ed Habetz and Tom Regan had in no. 28 here.


Chain drive and an extra piston strapped to the running board are crowd pleasers wherever the no. 30 American LaFrance speedster of Jerome Reinan and Chris Brungardt goes.


No. 33, a Ford speedster containing Brent Powley and Rick McIntosh, was particularly well proportioned.


No. 42 a century-old Peerless V-8 nicknamed The Green Dragon had a distinctive burbling exhaust note. Its crew consisted of Kyle Smith and Brett Lirones.


Nothing says “boattail” like real wood construction, which is exactly what the no. 43 Ford Model A speedster of Peter Brown and Ford Reiche sports.


No. 44, with Bill and Will Josler aboard, is another Ford Model A speedster with exquisite lines.


Although there’s plenty of high-end machinery around, some competitors manage not to take themselves too seriously, such as Dennis O’Connell and Stephen Hebert in their Bluesmobile Plymouth, no. 46.


Is it just us, or does the no. 48 Jaguar E-Type sit a touch nicer than stock? You’d have to ask pilot Ed Overmyer or navigator Eric Fayard, we guess.


Amazing that only 17 years separates the no. 49 Studebaker Hawk of Neil Myerscough and Shanna Chatraw from the no. 60 Chevrolet of John and Scott Hudson.


Boy, the no. 51 1916 Hudson of Dan and Brad Epple sure was YELLOW!


Barry and Jewel Jacobs piloted this Chevrolet pickup, no. 53.


We don’t know if this 1936 Ford De Luxe Fordor started life as a police car or not, but we can vouch that the siren works! Car 54, here, had Louise Feeney at the wheel with Jim Feeney navigating.


Larry Trible and Rock Rookey managed to score the appropriate no. 55 for their 1955 Chevrolet 210.


No. 58 was a ’32 Ford roadster with Richard Fredette and Jim Caudle inside.


John and Scott Hudson eschewed their namesake brand for the no. 60 Chevrolet.


Although “liquid sunshine” has been a part of this year’s Great Race, Bob Marak and Bruce Bernbaum took the opportunity afforded by the nice weather to lower the ragtop on their no. 61 Volkswagen Beetle.


Quadruple ’39 Ford taillamps and no fenders clearly signal that the no. 66 ’32 Ford Cabriolet is no stocker. Jody Knowles and Beth Gentry were the crew inside.


The Great Race Roster says no. 70 here should be piloted by Bill and Carolyn Croker, but it also says it should be a Packard, while this is clearly a ’38 Ford–So who knows?


This ’47 or ’48 Ford Super DeLuxe convertible was blasting “All Summer Long” by the Beach Boys when it arrived. Perfect music for such a beautiful day. That’s Mark Piekarski behind the wheel of no. 72 and Lennel Stroud beside him.


No. 78 here was another Ford from the immediate postwar era, prominently displaying symbols of Maine–including seafood. The Fordor arrived courtesy driver Peter Prescott and navigator Guy McDorr.


No. 82 was a ’39 Ford pickup with Jeff Hermanson at the wheel and Kathy Hermanson navigating.


No. 97 was an early Chevy II Nova hardtop. Its crew consisted of Krystin Stahl and Micaela Reardon.


A ’40 Ford convertible with whitewalls is a classy way to Great Race. No. 103 was driven by George Gordon and navigated by Bob Nerad.


No. 105, a Volvo PV 544, looked like it was ready for a high-speed rallye of the old type, but it too was in the gentler time/speed/distance Great Race, with a crew consisting of Terry Riggs and Steve Boutin.


Shane Clark and Brian Stanton were enjoying the sunshine in the no. 116 Ford Mustang.


It’s rare to see the luggage rack on a ’68 Mustang in use, but that’s exactly how no. 122 was decked out. Inside were Diana and Steve Pusey.


First to arrive for the festivities were Bob Kaplan and Dana Fraser in no. 128, Miss Daisy, a 1939 Jaguar SS.


A business coupe is a rare ’53 Chevy, but that didn’t stop Lex Sleeman and David Coon from entering no. 135 in The Great Race.


No. 147, a ’54 Chevrolet Bel Air convertible, sported some mild-custom touches. John and Denise Beaulieu were the crew.


Aside from the tires, it’s said the no. 150 Packard 1502 was all original. We’d guess Charles and John Harris know for sure.