We’re Racing Again! The 2020 VSCDA Blackhawk Classic

by | Jun 23, 2020

Last week, Cyndi Paceley of Vintage Motorsport magazine reached out to me for my impressions about upcoming the VSCDA Blackhawk Challenge. She was interested (after the racing concluded) to see how I felt the event went overall, and also specifically how the current Covid-related issues affected the event.

Her story will appear in the upcoming issue, I’m looking forward to reading the full story. Below is what I sent her regarding my impressions. (spoiler alert – we had a great time)

 

Sport and Specialty Alfa Romeo GTV

All photos courtesy Bill Nesius Photography

Hi Cindi,

It looked to me that all of the participants of VSCDAs Blackhawk Classic came away with a happy racing experience, and positive thoughts for this long race weekend. The strict Illinois quarantine rules dictated a laundry list of dos and don’t that in the end were all pretty easily tolerated and well managed.

Registrar Stacey Donato and Race Chair Ron Soave worked closely with track management to ensure that all of the various guidelines were interpreted properly and enforced reasonably. Race registration, communications, and payments were done on-line and flowed smoothly, Masks were to be worn in any buildings, social distancing was expected in paddock areas, and temps were religiously taken prior to entering the track area. No spectators (except for restricted crew) were allowed which in the end had little effect on the racing, just the general attendance. Midwestern Council of Sports Car Clubs managed the staffing and few, if any, issues were reported. Meals were served at the concession stand, and the attendee dinners were a take away boxed affair, which were great. I think common sense prevailed and virtually no policing was needed, as expectations seemed to be met by the participants. Good email and social media communications were helpful, as was the digitally sent driver’s meeting.

My 1969 Alfa Romeo GTV ran well most of the weekend and kept ahead of the other Alfa competitors until I succumbed to bad CV joint late Saturday during the heat race. The car count was off as expected, but we all had someone to race with and there were plenty of enthusiastic drivers to share stories with afterwards.

With many questions as to what a COVID 19 event may feel like, it seemed as if the track management, the sanctioning body and the participants all pull together to meet the state and local regulations, and follow the common sense recommendations, we just may be able to pull off a safe and fun vintage racing season here in the Midwest.


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