Steamboat Springs In a little more than a month, speedy cars will be racing almost 80 miles of bumpy backcountry roads of Routt County as part of the third annual Colorado Cog Rally.
Jim Gill, chairman for the race, said he thinks the event will draw top competitors.
"The word has gotten out, and we've gotten really good reviews," Gill said.
Last year, several homeowners who lived along the course called Gill a few days before the competition to request that the cars race in front of their homes, he said.
One woman called asking if the race would take place near her home, and Gill told her that the racers would start just a mile down the road.
"She said, 'Well, in the future, if you can make them go fast past our house, that'd be fun," Gill said.
The race, which is a performance rally sanctioned by the Sports Car Club of America, is scheduled Sept. 20. Gill and other members of the High Country Rally Group, which sponsors the race, recently mailed letters to homeowners along the route to alert them that some roads would be closed during certain times on race day.
Any residents who have problems with road closures are encouraged to contact race organizers, Gill said.
There are about 50 similar races at the club rally level across the country, Gill said. The goal of these races is not to go at top speeds, Gill said, although the all-wheel-drive cars can hit 100 mph on some stretches. Rather, he said, the goal is to skillfully navigate and drive on little-used roads.
Sports Car Club of America also sponsors about 10 "ProRally" races nationally, which attract more competitors and have longer race courses. In the next few years, Gill said he thinks the Colorado Cog Rally could grow into the SCCA's ProRally level.
"We're trying to start this event out small and kind of let it grow each year with the hope that maybe two or three years down the road, we're at a higher level," Gill said.