Article by Brian Hannon. Photography by Joel Chan, Corey Davis, Nathan Leach-Proffer, Kenta Young and Becca Furnish.
The first time you hold an event in a new location, there is always the concern of if the fans will enjoy it and, more important, will they show up? Those fears were allayed for Shift-S3ctor and Revvolution as more than 3,000 spectators poured through the gates at the inaugural Pikes Peak Airstrip Attack by OB Prestige Auto. Featuring half-mile roll race and trap speed competitions, we knew it would attract a lot of attention–not only from the spectators, but also from enthusiasts and the race community as well. With over 90 competitors (per day) averaging more than 750 hp, we knew this was going to be a killer event.
Held in conjunction with the newly revived Pikes Peak Speedweek, which culminated in the famed Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, the Pikes Peak Airstrip Attack was the first event of its kind in the U.S. to be held at a primary commercial service airport the size of the Colorado Springs Airport. The primary runways were still active during the event, and the adjoining Peterson Air Force Base was constantly sending planes and helicopters out on training missions. While Goose and Maverick never buzzed the strip (we know, they’re Navy, not Air Force), it provided a unique and inspiring backdrop for the event.
This also marked the first time Shift-S3ctor and Revvolution worked together as co-organizers for an event. We know the Shift-S3ctor guys put on a great show, but with this event taking place in our own backyard, we were able to have boots on the ground to work the local connections to take Airstrip Attack to the next level. Revvolution knew there was a growing appetite for this type of racing in Colorado and Shift-S3ctor was the group to help make it happen.
We intentionally scheduled it the same weekend as the Pikes Peak Hill Climb to help capture the media and enthusiast attention and give them a true automotive experience as part of Pikes Peak Speedweek. That move proved to be the right choice as Discovery Canada, Comcast, 1320video and SpeedSociety were recording video of the event, and The Gazette and a slew of others were on hand to document what went down at the airport.
Of course we also can’t forget the Ford Racing Street Team and the Red Bull bus spinning music all day. The constant supply of energy from the Red Bull girls was always a welcome sight.
Time to get down to the racing. The event was split into two days with Friday featuring a highest trap speed competition and Saturday showcasing the highly anticipated heads-up roll racing. Essentially, the cars accelerate up to 50 mph, match pace and, when they cross the start line, the hammer goes down. We were treated to a few races with both cars trapping over 200 mph. To experience that in person with STREET CARS is mind blowing.
The big story of the weekend was the rivalry between Gidi from Diamonds by Wire and Lucas English from English Racing in their two GTRs with over 1500 hp each. Their rivalry is so heated that it was enough to bring in Discovery Channel to film their weekend of competition for an upcoming special. We will relay more details when we hear about it.
Another heavy hitter was Armik from California, a regular at all the Shift-S3ctor events. He brought out his legendary Black Mamba Ford GT. Listening to this thing roll out of the hot was amazing as the twin turbo spooled up.
And if that wasn’t enough, he also showcased his Lexus LFA and had it screaming down the track. It is hard to find another car with a soundtrack like that coming out of the tailpipes.
2014 Pikes Peak Airstrip Attack Trap Speed Results
1. Lucas English: 208.33 (Nissan GT-R)
2. Gidi Chamdi: 206.42 (Nissan GT-R)
1. Kong Chang: 199.11 (Porsche 911 Turbo)
2. Armik Aghakhani: 192.63 (2006 Ford GT)
1. Austin Oakes: 184.12 (Mitsubishi Evo 8)
2. Atif Awan: 175.23 (Mitsubishi Evo 8)
1. Kenton von Hollen: 172.00 (2003 BMW M3)
2. Jeff Blair: 148.71 (2011 BMW M3)
1. Corby Garner: 158.00 (2008 Corvette Z06)
2. Dan Nixon: 154.53 (2013 Lamborghini Aventador)
1. Mini Molitor: 141.59 (1997 Honda Civic)
2. Myles Kerr: 140.71 (1994 Acura Integra)
2014 Pikes Peak Airstrip Attack Roll Racing Results
1. Lucas English (Nissan GT-R)
2. Gidi Chamdi (Nissan GT-R)
1. Armik Aghakhani (2006 Ford GT)
2. Brandon Rockhold (2007 Cadillac CTS-V)
1. Austin Oakes(Mitsubishi Evo 8)
2. Atif Awan (Mitsubishi Evo 8)
1. Kenton von Hollen (2003 BMW M3)
2. Hyrum Smith (2013 Mercedes-Benz E63S)
1. Corby Garner (2008 Corvette Z06)
2. Armik Aghakhani (2013 Lexus LF-A)
1. Myles Kerr (1994 Acura Integra)
2. Aaron Gosnell (1994 Honda Civic)
We’re big proponents of keeping racing on the track and we really appreciate what Shift-S3ctor is doing with their Airstrip Attacks. Instead of only being able to do highway pulls on, well, highways, enthusiasts now have an opportunity to run their cars all out without the fear of a minivan changing lanes in front of them or exciting the local constables. On-site EMTs aren’t a bad thing either. We expect to see this racing continue to gain in popularity. An added bonus is that you can earn bragging rights in front of a live crowd instead of anonymous keyboard jockeys (and even film it without repercussions).
Since we knew there would be heavy media coverage, we took the opportunity to publicly unveil the Revvolution Subaru BRZ. It still has a little ways to go, but it was an instant hit with the crowd, evident by a constant flow of onlookers checking out the BRZ basically sitting on the ground. Based on the initial reactions, we are overjoyed at the progress to date! Stay tuned for continued installations of the build.
A big surprise from the weekend came toward the end of the day on Saturday. The National Museum of World War 2 Aviation and Westpac Restorations asked if we’d be interested in them wheeling out one of their historic planes to use as a backdrop for some photos. There was no way we could say no, and minutes later they rolled out a gorgeous Grumman F7F-3N Tigercat that left us all in awe. The plane was so impressive with its slender body yet commanding presence that it almost stole the show from the cars lined up around it!
We owe a huge debt of gratitude to the general aviation community in Colorado Springs for making it happen and their support. We took over their runway for two days and they couldn’t have been more accommodating. It was still pretty cool taking brakes from the runs to let a few private jets and some vintage planes cross the track, er, runway.
The airport staff (Troy Stover, Dan Gallager, Benjamin Squire, Casey Parker, and others) and Mayor Bach of Colorado Springs were the reason this event happened. Without their support it wouldn't have gotten off the ground. They understood our vision and knew the impact an event like this can have on the region. Hopefully, that support continues for 2015 and beyond.
Special thanks to Tom Osborne and Lincoln Floyd of SportsCorp, who helped immensely to put it all together. A big shout out also goes to the Shift-S3ctor Revvolution teams: they did everything from working the gates all day to helping close down the event, leaving the airport as we found it. We want that invite back for next year!
And, of course, this event would never have gone down without the generous support of our sponsors and partners. Much thanks to each one!
Pikes Peak Airstrip Attack Diamond and Platinum Sponsors
OB PRESTIGE AUTO
Web @ www.OBPrestigeAuto.com
Web @ www.OBPrestigeAuto.com
Facebook @ https://www.facebook.com/obprestigeauto
Pikes Peak Airstrip Attack Gold Sponsors
Web @ www.EnglishRacing.net
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/EnglishRacing
Web @ www.BoulderNissan.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/bouldernissan
DIAMONDS BY WIRE
Web @ www.DiamondsByWire.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/diamondsbywire
Gold Sponsor & Official Part Supplier Partner
Web @ www.EdgeAutosport.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/edgeautosport
Web @ www.HeubergerMotors.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/heubergermotors
ELITE AUTO SALON
Web @ www.Eas.tc
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/architectsoffidelity
Pikes Peak Airstrip Attack Silver Sponsors
Web @ www.mo-fab.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/mofab.llc
UNDERPRESSURE POWER & PERFORMANCE
Web @ www.UPPCOS.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/uppcos
IMPACTED WRAPS & GRAPHICS
Web @ www.ImpactedWraps.com
Web @ www.SCRPerformance.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/scrperformance
Web @ www.ardesign.info
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/ardesign.info
LEASE LOCATORS RACING
Web @ www.Lease-Locators.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/leaselocators
COLORADO SPEED AND PERFORMANCE
BRISTOL BREWING COMPANY
Web @ www.BristolBrewing.com
Facebook @ https://facebool.com/BristolBrewing
Pikes Peak Airstrip Attack Partners
COLORADO SPRINGS AIRPORT
Web @ www.SpringsGov.com
THE BROADMOOR PIKES PEAK INTERNATIONAL HILL CLIMB
Web @ www.PPIHC.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/pikespeakhillclimb
CHEYENNE MOUNTAIN RESORT
Web @ www.CheyenneMountain.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/cheyennemountainresort
RANDELS MEDIA GROUP
THE CITY OF COLORADO SPRINGS
Web @ www.VisitCOS.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/visitcos
THE COLORADO SPRINGS SPORTS CORP
Web @ www.BRM-Manufacture.com
Web @ www.1320video.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/1320video.com
Web @ www.SpeedSociety.com
Facebook @ https://facebook.com/speedsociety
That’s a wrap on the inaugural Pikes Peak Airstrip Attack. The event was extremely successful and we’re looking to do it again next year to solidify it as one of the cornerstone events of Pikes Peak Speedweek!