Effective immediately, General Racing Ltd. will merge with the Sportscar Vintage Racing Association (SVRA). The merger was announced via press release on Monday, August 4.
According to SVRA, General Racing Ltd., a U.S. West Coast-based historic/vintage racing organization, was founded by Steve Earle in 1970. In 1974, with the support of Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance organizers, Earle launched the inaugural Monterey Historic Automobile Races at Laguna Seca Raceway. Races on the calendar expanded to include Portland Historic Automobile Races; the Coronado Speed Festival; special events at the Long Beach Grand Prix and the Kansas City Historic Grand Prix; as well as the Wine Country Classic at Sonoma Raceway.
Earle will advise SVRA on historic/vintage events around the country, including the Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival. The Sonoma Raceway event will continue under SVRA; it is slated next on the calendar for May 28-31, 2015.
From the beginning, Earle will also advise on SVRA's Gold Medallion Program as a member of SVRA's executive team. The Gold Medallion program seeks to recognize and reward historic/vintage car owners who have kept, or restored, their cars to "as originally raced" condition.
About the merger, SVRA CEO Tony Parella said, "I am thrilled to have Steve Earle join our team. Steve shares our vision and focus on developing national vintage racing. He has shown himself to be an extraordinary leader throughout his career, and has a proven track record in identifying, encouraging and celebrating authentically prepared cars. His view of vintage racing cars and events is a perfect match for the goals of SVRA."
Earle commented, "I am excited to join the SVRA team. I have been involved in vintage racing at all levels for over 40 years. I look forward to lending my experience and knowledge to help and support the growth of SVRA through the Gold Medallion Program, which will benefit the individual vintage racer, and the community as a whole."
Earle continued, "There is a recognized need for car period-authenticity and preparation as well as events that embrace it. I've been impressed with Tony Parella's vision and determination to open the doors for those who share similar interests in the historic significance of the cars they and their competitors enjoy owning and racing."
SVRA's season continues with the next event slated for August 14-17 at Pocono Raceway. According to SVRA, races remaining on the 2014 calendar include those at Watkins Glen International, September 3-7; Virginia International Raceway, September 25-28; and the organization's national championship to be held at Circuit of the Americas, October 8-12.