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Teams Participating in the World Race 2011 - Beijing to Paris segment

George Schuster driver of the winning Thomas Flyer in the 1908 race, courtesy TheGreatAutoRace.com

Price Team

Jerry Price of Plymouth, Wisconsin, Team owner, will be the lead driver and technician; Ed Gaven from Yuba City, California and Richard Goshert of Warsaw, Indiana will be the navigators of their Chevrolet Corvette and of a 2010 Toyota Highlander hybrid.

Just as the original 1908 Great Race participants were out to prove that the technology existed then to allow an automobile to travel long distances, the Price Team is proving in 2011 that the technology already exists to run a 2007 Chevy Corvette on 6 different kinds of fuel: Propane, Butane, Gasoline, Ethanol, Methane and Alcohol.

The Price Team encourages the auto industry to follow their lead and start producing vehicles that can burn 2 or 3 different fuels, so automobile drivers are no longer captive to any one fuel, leading toward energy savings and a cleaner tomorrow.

The 2010 Toyota Highlander hybrid is sponsored by Lakeland Toyota of Sheboygan, Wisconsin and is the only vehicle in the world equipped to run on natural gas.

Crabtree Team

The Crabtree Team consists of Jack and Mary Crabtree, an adventurous and perseverant pair with a 37-year marriage who once spent two years in Keflavik, Iceland. Jack, a Navy retiree and entrepreneur, and Mary, a loyal staffer at a nationwide fabric store who loves to create her own gifts, will be driving a red 1929 Model A Speedster that Jack painstakingly restored and improved after rescuing it from a Kansas barnyard.

Just for the record, Jack wants to make it clear that Mary is the Owner of Crabtree Racing, while Jack is the Banker, Auto Mechanic & Electrician, Head Grease Monkey and Tire Repairman. She does let him drive, though.

The 1929 Speedster says...

Henry Ford is my dad. He built me cheap and with loving care, so every American could own a car. Once in the hands of a farmer in Kansas, my body got cut and two 42 Ford hoods made up my backside. Then Jack and Mary Crabtree purchased me and did a real make over. They made some improvements to my running chassis, basically for dependability and the long trip around the world: hydraulic brakes, inserted engine, syncromesh & overdrive transmissions, just to name a few. I really like my red paint job.

Janet and Ed Howle and their '67 Type 1 Beetle, "Stewball"

It started when I met Ed. He had already crossed the Atlantic in a sailboat and planned to sail around the world with his three children. Since I had neither of these experiences, these seemed good reasons to marry him. We spent our honeymoon sailing the coast of North Carolina, in a storm. Not such a good start. Since Ed's children were growing up, the next logical step was to adopt three more, sail off to the Bahamas and home school them on our boat.

Our travel adventures slowed when we started a company manufacturing products for children with disabilities. Ed was the product designer, a logical step for a professor of economics. I stayed in my area of physical therapy to provide product ideas. This worked. I told him what to do and he did it. Our design for a walker for children became state of the art world-wide. Yeah, it really did. The business grew and we removed ourselves from the day-to-day management to travel again.

Ed came up with the next plan. We should move to Paris with the youngest two boys. Great idea. We spoke no French and had never lived or raised children in a city. Details should never stop a good idea. It worked. After five years abroad, we returned to the U.S. Now what?

We entered the 2005 Great Race in our first antique, a 1932 DeSoto rumble seat roadster. Sport car rallies came next in a 1957, 190SL Mercedes roadster. Then, I discovered the 2008 New York to Paris Great Race. What to drive? Another Ed decision. "We'll drive a Type 1 VW Beetle". The rally was to start on Feb. 12, 100 years after the 1908 race. The Beetle is great in snow with its rear engine and rear wheel drive and Ed said he could repair one. Our shake down trip was the 2007 Great Race. Then six weeks before D-day, China withdrew our travel permits "for our safety and protection". You may remember that was the year of the Olympic Games and the Tibetan uprisings. The New York to Paris rally was delayed until 2011, time enough to write a novel based on this event.

Now, while we wait, we work to publish The Long Road to Paris, a mix of political intrigue, suspense and, an intense romance between our driver and his beautiful, secretive French navigator. I said it was fiction. We are certain it will be a major motion picture, just as soon as we find an agent.

Ed's Disclaimer

Don't believe everything Jan writes. I can repair this car. Anyway, I have a garage full of repair parts to take. I've replaced the engine and added an external oil cooler. Too bad there'll be no snow.

Miller Garrison Team

Miller Garrison Racing was born a few years ago when Clay Miller bought a 35 Ford Phaeton that had run a few times in the Great Race. Clay took it home to Kentucky, went through it mechanically and then performed the requisite facelift. Car 54 is now a veteran of 3 annual Hemmings VCRA events and Coker Challenges.

The Garrison half of the team name is Clay's grandson Blake Garrison, now a sophomore at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green. Blake's sharp analytical mind is well suited to the skills required for navigating, which he has done in all but one of the above noted events.

Clay Miller has spent virtually his entire life in the lock and security industry, with his father, grandfather, aunts, uncles, cousins and kids all involved in one part or another of the industry.

Formerly President of lock maker Sargent & Greenleaf, Clay was seeking a new challenge in 1981 when he bought Lockmasters, a small trade school focused on teaching those interested how to open and service combination locks and safes. While the business has grown substantially, the focus is still on locks and security.

The team is building a 1932 3 window Ford coupe with a 48 Ford flat head engine, the body is all steel. There have been some modifications, an extra 15 gallon gas tank, an alternate fuel pump, an air compressor with 2 gallon storage tank, for the untimely flat tire, and dual isolated batteries in case of battery or alternator failure. An overdrive has also been added to assist with mountains and deserts. The team is looking forward to a good, dependable, comfy ride, for this very long journey.

For the 2011 World Race adventure the team will be pulling in a few other family members: Clay's son Mark Miller will navigate the US leg from New York to San Francisco, Blake will pick up navigation duties from Beijing to Moscow, where he will turn over the job to Clay's wife, April.

All the team members will reunite at the finish line in Paris.

Auerbach Team

Jon and Jake Auerbach have competed in 2 Great Races as well as a number of regional rallies. Additionally Jon competes in a number of VSCCA sanctioned flat track and hill climb events. In real life Jon runs his global stock brokerage business, Auerbach Grayson & Company, out of New York traveling peripatetically to fulfill his personal objective of making the world a better place for as many people as possible. Jake alternates semesters at various institutions of higher learning with ambitious ventures, music, poker, and other avocations befitting a fan of Camus, Kerouac, Hemingway, Monk amongst others who choose the road less travelled.

They have recently acquired a seasoned 1951 Chrysler New Yorker (appropriately their fair city) to compete in the 2011 World Race. This acclaimed competitor began life as a Missouri barn find over 10 years ago and has since successfully finished the Carrera Panamericana, the Chihuahua Express (1st in class and 8th overall), Pike's Peak (this year!), and National Vintage Stock Car competitions. The Chrysler is powered by a 354 cube Hemi pumping out 450 horses on steel wheels and is an homage to the very same model in the Chrysler Museum which competed successfully in the 1951 Panamericana against the Ferraris. Underneath the obligatory race graphics is the original factory two-tone paint.

Click each image to enlarge

Jonathan Auerbach
New York, NY
Edward & Janet Howle
Chapel Hill, NC
Dennis Barfield
Goose Creek, SC
Jerry Price
Plymouth, WI
Niny & Mary Crabtree
Goose Creek, SC
Jeff Mahl
St. James, FL
Edward Gaven
Yupa City, CA
Miller Garrison Team
Nicholasville, KY
Roy Geigel
Manitowoc, WI
Team MIR Corp
Seattle, WA

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