Lake Elsinore Grand Prix returns for 51st time

The Lake Elsinore Grand Prix returned Thursday, Nov. 7. Ryan Ponitz photo

The Lake Elsinore Grand Prix, which is now in its 51st year and is known as the historic race brought to life in the late 1960s and is one of the largest off-road festivals in Southern California, roared back into town Thursday, Nov. 7. The event took place through Sunday, Nov. 11, and brought with it the unique aspect of the race which gives riders the opportunity to race on the local city streets and through the back hills.

The Grand Prix was memorialized with the 1971 documentary “On Any Sunday,” which included appearances by Hollywood action movie star Steve McQueen and legendary motorcycle racer Malcolm Smith. This year’s Grand Prix will offer two Harvey Mushman competitions, named after the alias McQueen used in the races, and both will be staged from Graham Avenue in front of the Wreck bar. City Park at Main and Limited will be the site of many auxiliary activities, including a vintage and veterans’ motorcycle exhibit, and as many as 35 food, beverage and merchandise vendors.

Lake Elsinore Grand Prix drivers zip around the course. Ryan Ponitz photo

The event usually yields 5,000 to 7,000 visitors to patronize the restaurants and shops that line several blocks of the quaintly nostalgic thoroughfare. For results and more information visit

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