Tragedy has struck the 93rd Pikes Peak International Hill Climb when 39-year old rider Carl Sorensen was killed after losing control of his bike close to the summit of the mountain course.

Local reports indicate that Sorensen was on one of the last left-hander turns close to the end of the route when he lost control of his Ducati 848 Superbike. No guard rails were in the vicinity so Sorensen and his bike ended up going over a cliff where he was killed in the fall.

It’s a devastating and ominous start to the 2015 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, which ironically doesn’t have too many deaths on its docket despite being regarded as one of the most dangerous races in the world. In its 93-year life span, the PPIHC has only seen six fatalities. Some people, including me, will still argue that it’s six times too many, but compared to other races, Pikes Peak ironically has a low casualty number.

Sorensen’s death hits a little close to home because not only is he considered a hometown boy - he’s from Centennial, Colorado - but he’s also a veteran of the Pikes Peak race track. Just last year, he finished in 10th place in the Open class and 16th overall of the event.

This year was supposed to be Sorensen’s third participation in the race, where he was aiming to finish the course in under 10 minutes for the first time. Sadly, he won’t have that chance anymore.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife and son, as well as his family and friends.

Continue reading to read more about Carl Sorensen’s unfortunate death at Pikes Peak.

Why it matters

News like this always leaves me gutted because this is the worst kind of news you want to write about. Writing about somebody who just died is all sorts of wrong, but I understand the responsibility of doing so. Still, it stinks, and chances are, I’m not the only one who has that opinion.

I understand that anybody who races motorcycles readily embraces the inherent risk that comes with it. The sport isn’t exactly the safest one to participate in. But learning about how Carl Sorensen died left me feeling a little upset because of the fact that it could’ve been avoided if there were guard rails in the area where he crashed.

I’m not going to put the blame on the organizers of the race because this isn’t their fault. This is just a horrible cause of something happening at the wrong time in the wrong place. Carl Sorensen lost his life because of it and that’s something that’s going to be hard to come to grips with, especially to his wife and son.

Once again, my deepest condolences to the family he left behind.

Press Release

"The collective hearts of the Colorado Springs community and the Board of Directors of The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, share the grief and pain of Carl Sorensen’s family, friends and fans over his untimely death.

Throughout the 92 years that this unique race has been conducted on America’s Mountain, we have experienced the ultimate joy in triumph, the disappointment of failure and now, the unexpected heartbreak of the loss of a competitor, whose love of the race brought him to Pikes Peak. We mourn the tragic death of Carlton and he will be in all of our hearts this Sunday for the 93rd Race to the Clouds.

He will be remembered as a loving husband, father, son, brother, and friend with a tremendous sense of humor and a passion for racing.

He left our lives while doing something that he loved, and it is the only thing that has the ability to deal with the reality of life, the acceptance of the competitors of the dangers in the race, and the heart and soul of a great man.

With our deepest condolences,

The Family of Carl Sorensen and Board of Directors of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb."

View the full press release Hide press release
Press release
What do you think?
Show Comments
Motorcycle Finder: