As a result of the ongoing pandemic and its impact on the state of New York, the Hilliard U.S. Vintage Grand Prix at Watkins Glen International scheduled for September 11-13 with Sportscar Vintage Racing Association, featuring the Trans Am Series presented by Pirelli, has been postponed until the 2021 season.
The two 100-mile races slated for Watkins Glen will now run as one race on Sunday during the Virginia International Raceway event (September 24-27), making it a doubleheader and double-points scoring weekend for Trans Am.
Trans Am has a deep history at Watkins Glen, holding its first event at the legendary New York circuit in 1968. Competing there 32 times since its 1968 debut, Watkins Glen is one of Trans Am’s largest events on the calendar.
“SVRA and Trans Am have worked for several weeks with the New York Health Department, the Governor’s office and a New York lobbyist to navigate a proper resolution to fit within the Pro-Athlete event exception,” said Trans Am Racing Company President John Clagett. “We thought we had a plan that would allow us to safely hold our evet. But, in the end we had some road blocks with out-of-state drivers quarantining for 14 days prior to the event. We fully intended to run at Watkins Glen and had some really encouraging collaboration among everyone. Unfortunately, there were still some challenges that could not be overcome, but we will now need to look forward to our return in 2021.”
With a schedule that has adapted through the 2020 season to stage safe events, Trans Am is trying to turn the Watkins Glen cancellation to the benefit of series competitors. Since the VIR timetable will be extended by a day, Trans Am has offered its teams a complementary test day on Thursday, September 24, to make up for travel inconveniences.
The first part of the VIR weekend schedule will stay as planned, with testing on Thursday, September 24, with practice and split qualifying sessions on Friday, September 25. Saturday, September 26 will feature two 100-mile features, one for TA2 powered by AEM and one for TA/XGT/SGT/GT. SVRA will make adjustments to Saturday’s schedule to maximize turnaround time for Sunday’s race day.
On Sunday, September 27, an All-Class 100-mile feature will culminate the extended weekend. The grid will be based on the fastest lap times from Saturday’s race and the start will be split three ways (TA, TA2, XGT/SGT/GT).