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100th Anniversary Race of The Historic Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Set For June 26 With a Lineup of Talented Drivers and Riders From Around The World

Monday, Jun. 6 2016
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Colorado Springs———-The eyes of the motorsports world will soon be centered on Colorado Springs as the city and racing community celebrate the 100th Anniversary of The Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Brought to you by Gran Turismo.

On Sunday, June 26, a classy field of 102 drivers and riders, including 13 rookies, will take on the grueling 12.42 mile course with 156 turns that begins at 9,390 feet at the Official Start Line and ends at the 14,115-foot summit of Pikes Peak, America’s Mountain. The race was founded in 1916 by Spencer Penrose, who also founded the world-famous Broadmoor Hotel, the Pikes Peak Highway and the El Pomar Foundation.

“We think we have met the challenge of the 100th Anniversary of this historic race with a great lineup of talented drivers and riders,” said PPIHC Chairman Tom Osborne. “The thousands of loyal fans who come to the course on June 26 for the Race to the Clouds will be thrilled with what they will see for sure.”

Get all the race information and ticket purchase information at: www.ppihc.com

For a century, the world’s most demanding hill climb has attracted fearless competitors who have made it to the top to triumph on America’s Mountain, including the greats of American motorsport – Mario Andretti, Parnelli Jones, Roger Mears, Al Unser, Al Unser, Jr., Louis Unser, Bobby Unser, Rick Mears and scores of others, including generations of racing families with names like Dallenbach, Unser, Donner, and Vahsholtz.

In recent years, as the popularity and profile of the race spread around the globe, fans have seen a whole new family of international winners emerge, like Japan’s Nobuhiro Tajima, New Zealand’s Rod and Rhys Millen, Finland’s Ari Vatanen, Sweden’s Per Eklund and Sébastien Loeb of France, who stunned the world with his Pikes Peak course record of 8:13.878 in 2013. Michele Mouton of France became the first woman to win a championship when she captured the Open Rally division in 1984 and 1985 in her Audi Quattro.

This year’s 94th Running of America’s second-oldest motorsports race, behind only the Indianapolis 500, will feature a menu of exciting races matching past champions and record holders, as always.

“Our team has worked long and hard to produce a race that will meet the standards that Spencer Penrose set in 1916 with the first Pikes Peak Hill Climb,” said PPIHC Executive Director Megan Leatham. “We recognize the importance of the 100th Anniversary and the history of this tremendous event, and I think it will be celebrated by the thousands of fans who love the event.”

This year’s race includes competitors from Japan, Canada, Great Britain, France, Australia, Taiwan, Corsica, Poland, Brazil, Scotland, Austria, and Switzerland, as well as the field from the USA.

The Electric Modified Class pits the 65-year-old Tajima, who was the first competitor to break the 10-minute mark in 2011 and has a total of 11 wins at Pikes Peak, against 43-year-old Rhys Millen, who will be racing for the 23rd time at Pikes Peak, with a résumé that includes nine championships, starting with a win in 1992 in the Pikes Peak Open Division and Rookie of the Year honors. He still holds the record in the old auto High Performance Showroom Stock Class with his clocking of 12:59.410 in the Two-Wheel drive event in ’92.

The move by Tajima and Millen from gasoline-powered autos is an example of the expanding interest in the electrics in recent years.

Millen, who has won ten times at Pikes Peak, won the Electric Modified Class last year with a time of 9:07.22, setting a new record in the Class, with Tajima second at 9:32.401, which is significant, because Tajima’s record time of 9:51.278 in the 2011 Unlimited Division made him the first driver to break the elusive 10-minute mark, which was set the year before the course became fully-paved from start to finish for the first time.

45-year-old Clint Vahsholtz (Woodland Park, Colorado) will take on a talented field in the Pikes Peak Challenge-Open Wheel auto class after taking third place last year behind winner Paul Dallenbach, one of the legends in the race. Vahsholtz is a 21-time winner (16 in the Super Stock Car Division) at Pikes Peak in three separate divisions, while Dallenbach will move to the high-profile Unlimited Division this time.

Dallenbach (Basalt, Colorado), who won the Pikes Peak Challenge Open Wheel Division last year with a course record time of 9:36.496, also holds the record in the Time Attack I Division with his winning time of 9:46.001 in 2013. He has won a total of eight championships on America’s Mountain, with six of them coming in the Open Wheel division.

He will have a formidable task in the Unlimited field where two-time French champion Romain Dumas returns to Pikes Peak for another shot at the course record. The two-time (2012 Pikes Open) and 2014 (Unlimited) PPIHC winner is also a double winner in the famous 24 Hours of Le Mans (2010 and 2013).

With his winning time of 9:05.801 in 2014, Dumas holds the third fastest time up the mountain of all time behind Loeb, the only driver under the 9-minute mark in history.

Colorado Springs’ own David Donner will return in the Time Attack I Division driving a 2013 Porsche GT3R. He won the 2015 Time Attack Production Division with a record time of 10:26.896 and holds four other PPIHC championships, including the 2012 Unlimited Division title and three Pikes Peak Challenge wins.

Woodland Park’s Codie Vahsholtz, the son of legendary Clint Vahsholtz, headlines a loaded Motorcycle field of 35 riders, riding in the Pikes Peak Middleweight Division. He set a Pikes Peak Lightweight course record of 10:26.896 in winning last year on his 2006 KTM SMR bike, and still holds the record of 11:24.792 in the old Pikes Peak 250cc race, set in 2013.

Japan’s famous rider, Yoshihiro Kishimoto, will ride on a new 2016 KOMMIT EVT Zero FXS motorcycle developed by The Massachusetts Institute of Technology Electric Vehicle Team (MIT EVT), which teamed up with racing companies Komatti (Isle of Man) and Mirai (Japan) to produce and enter the high-tech electric motorcycle in the Electric Bike Division.

Kishimoto won last year in the Electric Modified Class with a time of 10:58.861 on a MIRAI Electric bike and has his sights set on a better time with the unusual bike produced by the MIT team and its partners.

Jeremy Toye (San Marcos, California), comes back in the Exhibition Powersport Motorcycle Class after establishing a course record in the Pikes Peak Heavyweight Division with a time of 9:58.687 in 2014.

Fans should not miss the 2016 The Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Fan Fest celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Race to the Clouds on Friday, June 24 from 5:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. in Downtown Colorado Springs. Fans can see their favorite competitors and vehicles as they prepare to take on Pikes Peak for the 94th race. Entertainment includes motorcycle exhibitions, vendor booths, Beer Garden and Firefighter Chili Cook-off.

It’s all part of the amazing Pikes Peak Speedweek, Colorado’s Premier Motorsports Experience, which kicks off on June 18 with a lineup of spectacular events. See the whole schedule at: http://pikespeakspeedweek.com

 

Mike Moran  mike@thesportscorp.org

Senior Media Consultant

1631 Mesa Avenue, Suite E

Colorado Springs, CO 80906

(719) 358-9588 (office) Cell: (719) 338-9161

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