The legendary Monterey Historics, known in recent years as the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion (scheduled for August 13-16), and the preceding weekend’s Pre-Historics event, have been cancelled. The decision comes in reaction to ongoing public gathering restrictions caused by COVID-19.
In a letter to its participants, track manager John Narigi wrote “CAL/OSHA still mandates as of June 5 that, ‘All public events or concentrated gatherings, including musical or other performances, at these facilities must be canceled or postponed.’”
Cancellation of the Reunion has been expected for more than a month after a number of internal roadblocks, along with the cancellation of bigger Monterey Car Week events, had been made by those organizers.
Rolex, the longtime sponsor of the event, withdrew its support for the Reunion, along with all of its other major sporting sponsorships for the year, in reaction to the coronavirus. And in another twist, the immensely powerful and influential Reunion Selection Committee, comprised of some of the biggest names in vintage racing, which was responsible for choosing the 500-plus entries for the event, resigned last month after encountering ongoing philosophical differences with Mr. Narigi and Darius Sadeghi, the committee’s county-appointed overseer.
In place of the Reunion, WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca will host a private event for vintage racers on the former Pre-Historics weekend of August 8-9.
“We will be hosting a Driver Appreciation Weekend to replace the Pre-Reunion dates of August 8 and 9, with load-in occurring on Friday, Aug. 7,” Narigi said. “This will be a private track rental where you will be able to enjoy driving in a low-key club-like affair. We empathize with many of you who remain dedicated to coming to Monterey, and this event is for you.”
Of note, A&D Narigi LLC, and the Monterey County board of supervisors, will need to find a significant number of volunteers to facilitate any professional events after the Laguna Seca Volunteer Association informed both groups on Thursday it was breaking off contract negotiations.
In closing the letter, Mr. Narigi confirmed his intent for the Reunion to return in 2021.