Article by Ryan Randels. Photography by Corey Davis, James Harris and Ryan Randels.
Friday was the final day of practice and qualifying for the competitors in this year’s Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (PPIHC). With one remaining group of classes yet to be covered, Team Revvolution cruised up to the middle of the mountain, where we shot the classes’ final sessions before race day on Sunday. With our attention back on the racecar competitors, we covered the Pikes Peak Open, Open Wheel, Electric, Exhibition, and Pikes Peak Vintage classes.
There’s something special about watching a handful of open-wheeled, purpose-built racecars roar past you, literally shaking the frozen tundra beneath your feet. But when they’re followed by seemingly silent electric cars that are able to propel themselves up the grades of the mountain with little more than the whine of a Toyota Prius and the audible alarm of an ice cream truck, you know you’ve found an event unlike any other in the world.
With Friday’s practice sessions being the final opportunity for the competitors to push their vehicles, we found that many of them were making minute adjustments to dial in their chassis, suspensions, and drivetrains for optimum response and reliability. To have gotten this far is a true testament to all the hard work, remarkable dedication, and unbridled enthusiasm that the teams, manufacturers, and supporters have demonstrated for this undertaking.
PIKES PEAK OPEN DIVISION PPIHC FRIDAY PRACTICE SESSION
These cars may look like stock cars from the outside, but major modifications can be done to their engines, transmissions and suspension. Pikes Peak Open Record: Romain dumas (2012), 9:46.181.
OPEN WHEEL DIVISION PPIHC FRIDAY PRACTICE SESSION
The traditional race car on Pikes Peak. Their appearance ranges from an Indy car style to a dune buggies. Open wheel cars have competed in every Pikes Peak International Hill Climb since the first race in 1916. This is a very fast division. Open Wheel Record: Robby Unser (1994), 10:05.85.
ELECTRIC DIVISION PPIHC FRIDAY PRACTICE SESSION
The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb recognizes the future of electricity in the automotive industry. It is through this effort that constructors of electric vehicles may showcase their engineering excellence of these truly unique vehicles. Electric Record: Fumio Nutahara (2012), 10:15.380.
EXHIBITION DIVISION PPIHC FRIDAY PRACTICE SESSION
In keeping with the mission statement of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, specifically to "demonstrate advancements in the practical application of motor sports technology,” the race encourages vehicles that don’t fit into one of its regular divisions to enter in the Exhibition Division. Exhibition Record: Rick Knoop (2012), 10:56.240.
PIKES PEAK VINTAGE DIVISION PPIHC FRIDAY PRACTICE SESSION
These vintage race cars make us remember back to the glory days of Pikes Peak with cars like; Mustang, Cobra, Mercury and Lincoln too. Eligible cars are those manufactured in 1990 or earlier.
We cannot wait for Sunday’s event—keep an eye on Revvolution.com, as we provide live streaming and social media coverage of the 91st running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.