Great Race Diary - June 17, 2002

June 18, 2002

by Alan Hunt

A Baylor University-sponsored 1947 Ford convertible is among 100 rare antique vehicles competing in The 2002 Great Race, which started June 15 in San Antonio and ends Saturday, June 22, in Anaheim, Calif.

The Great Race is a timed endurance rally-race; a contest about precision driving and navigation, not speed. Aided only by a speedometer, analog clock, pencil and paper (no maps, cell phones or odometers), the competitors must follow written course instructions at exact, predetermined speeds. The winners finish within seconds of the predetermined "perfect time." Drivers and navigators will be competing for a share of the prize purse valued at $250,000.

Michael Black, coordinator of chapter development at the Baylor Alumni Association, is accompanying the Baylor car during the 2,500-mile rally-race and will send regular progress reports to the Baylor Public Relations web site.

Michael Black's Update:

Monday - June 17 - Fort Worth to Clovis, N.M.

The Baylor racing team completed the longest stage of the race from Fort Worth to Clovis, N.M. -- a distance of 420 miles. Driver Doyle Rogers and his son, Scott Rogers, who serving as navigator, completed the day's run with a time of 46 seconds off a perfect score.

Pit stops drew the crowds in the Texas towns of Eastland, Sweetwater and Littlefield, and thousands of people crowded the streets of Clovis, where the race cars were displayed during the overnight stop. Several Baylor alums stopped by to offer their good wishes to the Baylor crew and to admire their car, a 1947 Ford convertible.

Friendly crowds have greeted us along the Great Race route and I judged Clovis to be the best overnight stop so far. The people really rolled out the red carpet for us. The carved wooden bear mascot that Doyle and Scott are carrying in the back of their car is proving a real attention-getter, particularly among the children. Of course, we welcome the chance to tell them about Baylor's mascot!

Today's leg will take the cars deeper into New Mexico along a 250-mile route, including a mid-morning pit stop in Tucumcari, and an afternoon stop in Las Vegas. The overnight stop will be held in Haynes Park in the city of Rio Rancho -- and large crowds are again expected.

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