America's Mountain: Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Practice-Qualifier Day 2

lightning motorcycles ppihc 2013 carlin dunne turning in

Article by Ryan Randels. Photography by Corey Davis and James Harris.

On Thursday, we ventured to the top of America’s Mountain for Day 2 of the official practice and qualifying sessions. As we described in Day 1’s recap [link out], the classes are divided into three run groups, and the course is divided into three sections. Every day of practice each group gets a dedicated section of the course. Starting at Devil’s Playground (elevation 12,780 ft.), the third leg of the course extends to the top of Pikes Peak at elevation 14,110 ft. Taking on the top leg of the course were all the motorcycle divisions, including Sidecar, 1205cc, 750cc, 450cc, 250cc, Heavyweight Supermoto, Quad Modified, Exhibition Powersport (including the Z-electric bikes), and the Vintage motorcycles.

norm meyer pikes peak 1205 2004 ducati s4r monster

james compton exhibition powersports 36 2002 kawasaki zrx1200

carlin dunne exhibition powersports lightning superbikes

ted richard exhibition powersports 2013 zero s

carlin dunne 5 exhibition powersports lightning superbikes

bruno marlin 113 addisan side car 2012 benelli tnt 1300

It’s always refreshing to vary from our regular coverage and provide something that we feel simply doesn’t get enough attention—the motorcycle classes. These riders and "monkeys” (co-riders in the sidecars as they’re affectionately referred to) are simply balls-to-the-wall crazy. With many displaying their true track bravura, they push their machines to their mechanical limits on the asphalt twists and turns of the mountain, laying their bikes to degrees seen at a MotoGP race. With nothing more than a helmet and a thin layer of leather to protect them from the mountain, these guys (and women!) have arguably the biggest spines in the race. Since is technically an automotive community, we don’t regularly cover motorcycle events, but when we do, the coverage turns out something like this . . .

wide open carlin dunne lightning bike in the canyon

bike race start ppihc 2013

pikes peak international hill climb 2013 davey durelle 2009 honda crf450 and dan berendes 2008 honda crf450

Sidecar Class PPIHC Thursday Practice Session

According to, three wheels, two riders ("driver” and "passenger”), and one winning mission. The passenger (or aptly named "the monkey”) lets it all hang out in the turns, making for some interesting action. Sidecars are always a crowd favorite. Sidecar record: John-Thomas Wood (2012), 11:41.406.

john wood side car 1996 windle suzuki

hans shultz side car 99 1974 feddermann 750 suzuki

masahito watanabe 66 2007 lcr f2-kumano

bruno marlin side car 113 2012 benelli tnt 1130

masahito watanabe side car 66 2007 lcr f2-kumano 2

christophe lebert side car 1984 yamaha fj 1100

Pikes Peak 250 Class PPIHC Thursday Practice Session

Don’t let the size fool you. There are motorcycles with bigger engines on Pikes Peak, but the 250 Class is fast and competitive. These machines are usually factory built for racing with two-stroke and four-stroke single- or twin-cylinder engines. Pikes Peak 250 Record: Jason Archuletta (2012), 11:41.015.

zachary jacobs pikes peak 250 2009 honda crf250r

Pikes Peak 450 Class PPIHC Thursday Practice Session

A popular class with many riders. Two-stroke and four-stroke engines are eligible. Many older design machines of this size are successful in this race, but bikes off the showroom floor can also be competitive. Single- and twin-cylinder engines are allowed. Pikes Peak 450 Record: Travis Newbold (2012), 11:06.618.

cal collins 2011 honda crf450r 1

darryl lujan 2007 honda crf 450r 1

travis newbold 2005 honda crfx

Pikes Peak Heavyweight Supermoto PPIHC Thursday Practice Session

Many riders choose to use a lightweight, single-cylinder, four-stroke 700cc engine in this class. This engine creates an excellent power-to-weight ratio, something all Pikes Peak racers strive for. Twin-cylinder engines may be as large as 750cc. Pikes Peak Heavyweight Supermoto Record: Gary Trachy (2012), 10:40.753.

Pikes Peak Superbike 750 PPIHC Thursday Practice Session

A new class in 2012, Pikes Peak Superbike 750 will feature two-, three-, or four-cylinder superbikes with no supercharging or turbocharging.

Pikes Peak 1205 PPIHC Thursday Practice Session

This class gives the new breed of over 900cc twin- or triple-cylinder off-road motorcycles a place to race. In 2006 four of these powerful bikes ran in an exhibition with impressive times, proving their adaptability to Pike Peak. All eyes will be on these thundering machines. Pikes Peak 1205 Record: Carlin Dunne (2012), 9:52.819.

bobby goodin 2007 aprilia tuono 2

dusty labarr 2005 suzuki sv 1

bruno langlois 2013 ducati multistrada ppihc 2013

Quad Modified PPIHC Thursday Practice Session

Essentially four-wheeled motorcycles, these machines are limited only by tread width and the use of an ATV engine of 500cc or less. Stability is aided by extreme weight shifting by the rider. Cornering velocity is very high, while the relatively small engines hold down outright speed. Quad Modified Record: Steve Tutt (2012), 11:40.521.

mike ell 2010 rattler n3

theo bernhard 2007 yamaha yz 465 quad 1

keith steidl quad modified 63 2013 honda trx450r

Exhibition Powersport PPIHC Thursday Practice Session

This division includes Utility Terrain Vehicles (UTVs) and Quads 750cc-up. Also included in this division (new for 2013) is an electric motorcycle class that will feature riders competing on stock Zero Electric Motorcycles courtesy of Hollywood Electrics. Exhibition Powersport Record: Doug Siddens (2012), 10:40.669.

eddie smith 329 2011 tremoto evo 321

lloyd meador 2004 ducati 749 rs ppihc 2013

jake holden 2002 kawasaki zrx1200 ppihc 2013

pikes peak international hill climb ppihc 2013 powered by agani motors

cal neske exhibition powersports 666 2007 aprilia sxv

eddie smith exhibition powersports 329 2011 tremoto evo 321

carlin dunne exhibition powersports 5 2013 lightning electric superbike

Vintage Motorcycles PPIHC Thursday Practice Session

This division includes 650cc–750cc, four-stroke twin-cylinder bikes that would qualify for current AHRMA events. Vintage Motorcycle Record: Marc LaNoue (2012), 12:39.782. [Thursday results]

lloyd hale 1972 yamaha shell

david rutherford vintage motorcycle 1965 bsa 750 trackmaster


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