After a huge wildfire delayed the 2012 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, it has finally had its day in the spotlight, and it did not disappoint. The entire PPIHC was chock-full of craziness and highlights, along with some low-lights worthy of mention.
The biggest highlight of the day was seeing a record set at last year’s race fall. It fell not only once, but twice in only 10 starts. Switzerland’s Romain Dumas – a PPIHC rookie – fired up the hill, completing the course in just 9:46.18 in his 2012 Porsche GT3 RS . This demolished the 9:51.278 record set by Nobuniro Tajima In 2011. Just 10 starts later, Rhys Millen, an 18-year PPIHC veteran, beat Dumas’ time by 0.02 seconds in his 2012 Hyundai Genesis coupe. Yeah, figure that one out; a Hyundai beat a Porsche GT3 RS .
Dejected, Dumas vowed never to race Pike’s Peak again, claiming it is unfair because he raced in rainy conditions, while Millen got a drier track to run on. In all honesty, though, 10 starts just doesn’t seem like a long enough time frame to cause a huge discrepancy in track conditions. We’re calling “Sore loser” on this one. That’s no way to get a good name in the racing world.
A huge low-light in this year’s race is the fact that the 2011 champion and former record holder, Nobuniro Tajima, didn’t even get a shot at the title, as his electric motor burned up. Tajima had a pretty good chance to win the race in back-to-back years, but that was apparently not in the cards this year. We’re sure he’ll be back near the top next year.
Let’s take a look at the top-3 in each class, plus the top-10 overall results.
Click past the jump to see these results.