Following an unprecedented one-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Portland’s iconic Rose Cup Races has announced it will return this summer to celebrate 60 years of high-speed racing. The Rose Cup Races will take place July 9—11 at Portland International Raceway (PIR). Enthusiasts will enjoy seven different race groups—including a return of Karts—as well as special salutes to the cars, drivers, and stories compiled since 1961.
Originally a Portland Rose Festival event and now presented by Friends of PIR, the Rose Cup Races was the first major event ever held at PIR in 1961 and has taken place annually ever since, with the exception of 2020. The event features amateur racing competitors from both the Oregon Region Sports Car Club of America and the Cascade Sports Car Club. This year offers seven race groups, including The Crossflow Cup, a series for Historic Formula Fords that features big fields and hard clean racing. The full lineup of race groups includes:
Big Bore FOPIR Rose Cup Feature Race: Large displacement engine cars like Corvettes, Camaros, Mustangs, Shelby GT350s, Cobras, and Porsches. Four classes within one race called RC1, RC2, RC3, and RC4, depending on performance level.
Vintage: A Rose Cup Races tradition with a wide variety of brands and iconic models that will have fans reminiscing about their favorite cars growing up.
Spec Racer Ford: Open cockpit identical sports racer cars powered by 1.6-liter Ford engines put the focus on the drivers in this highly competitive group, with multiple lead changes per lap a common occurrence.
Small Bore Production: Small displacement engine cars from Nissan, Honda, Ford, Austin Healy, Mazda, Alfa Romeo, MG, and more. Four classes within one race called SB1, SB2, SB3, and SB4 depending on the performance level.
Spec Miata: Famous for tight battles and finishes that are just inches apart, these Mazda Miatas are also in a fight for a season-long championship in the Northwest Spec Miata Tour.
Formula Ford: Formula Ford has been a class since the mid-1960s when it was a stepping stone for many Formula One drivers. Now it is one of the premier vintage racing groups, often with 30 or more beautifully prepared cars turning up at events. Many of the Formula Fords racing at the 2021 Rose Cup will be taking part in the Crossflow Cup series.
Karts: Rounding out the seventh race group is the Portland Karting Association. Road racing karts are super quick with very close racing and are the prime entry point for road racers’ careers around the world.