Ray Evernham picked as grand marshal for Elegance at Hershey

The scene at The Elegance at Hershey in 2015 at The Hotel Hershey | West Peterson / The Elegance at Hershey
The scene at The Elegance at Hershey in 2015 at The Hotel Hershey | West Peterson / The Elegance at Hershey

There are many impressive things you could say about motorsports great Ray Evernham: A successful competition driver who then worked with other notable drivers in IROC, served as NASCAR crew chief for Jeff Gordon’s team in winning three championships, built his own successful racing-management business, collected and modified a number of significant performance cars, leads philanthropy efforts and became famous as a broadcast personality.

But it would be something of a stretch to use the word “elegant” to describe Ray Evernham, he of the plaid flannel shirt, pickup trucks and engaging grin.

Ray Evernham with an old Ford pickup | The Elegance at Hershey
Ray Evernham with an old Ford pickup | The Elegance at Hershey

Yet the 2016 edition of The Elegance at Hershey in June has chosen Evernham to serve as grand marshal of the prestigious concours d’elegance in Pennsylvania. Evernham will preside over what the event website calls “a genteel garden party featuring the world’s finest collector cars, arrayed around the classically manicured gardens of The Hotel Hershey.”

That’s a far cry from the thunderous competition of a NASCAR race.

Although, The Elegance does feature the motorsports spectacle of the Grand Ascent, in which historic race cars run up the back road of Hotel Hershey on Saturday, June 11, the day before the concours d’elegance on Sunday.

“I am honored to be the Grand Marshal at The Elegance at Hershey,” Evernham said in a news release. “In just a few short years, The Elegance has become well-known in automotive circles. I’m excited to see the race cars on the hill and view the spectacular automotive works of art on the lawn of the prestigious Hotel Hershey.”

Evernham was praised for his 40-year career in motorsports by Steve Moskowitz of The Elegance board.

“We chose Ray not only for his great appreciation of fine automobiles and all forms of automobile racing, but because he is a ‘car guy’ in every sense of the word,” Moskowitz said. “Ray is one of those people you instantly like and is the type of person we want to honor. We are most appreciative that he has taken time out of his busy schedule to join us for the weekend.”

The Hershey weekend, June 10-12, 2016, will also host a new feature, a collector-car auction presented by Keno Brothers Fine Automobile Auctions, which recently held its first sale in Manhattan, New York.

For more information about The Elegance at Hershey, see the event website.

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Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.