Pikes Peak Int'l Hill Climb news 2010-03-01

Veterans Millen,Dallenbach Will Challenge Four-Time Champion Tajima And The Mountain This Summer During 88th Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Colorado Springs, March 1, 2010----Eleven returning champions are among 100 competitors already...

Veterans Millen,Dallenbach Will Challenge Four-Time Champion Tajima And The Mountain This Summer During 88th Pikes Peak International Hill Climb

Colorado Springs, March 1, 2010----Eleven returning champions are among 100 competitors already registered for the 2010 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, the nation's second oldest motor sports race behind the Indianapolis 500.

Race Day is set for Sunday, June 27 on the Peak just outside Colorado Springs, and the 2010 event should continue the excitement and heated competition that marked last summer's chase that attracted 163 racers in 17 classes who attacked the 12.42 mile course with 156 turns to the 14,110-foot summit.

Set to return again is four-time Unlimited Class champion Nobuhiro "Monster" Tajima, the crack Japanese driver who holds the course record of 10:01.408 (2007). Tajima defeated a world-class field last summer in 10:15.368 that included a trio of European rally car champions paced by Ford Rallycross Fiesta drivers Marcus Gronholm and Andreas Eriksson, who may be coming back to take a shot at Tajima and the mountain.

Tajima will have his hands full this time, with the return of the Ford Fiesta team in the works and two heralded veterans of the storied race moving from their usual slots to the Unlimited Class.

17-year veteran Rhys Millen, who set a world record on the hill last year in winning the Time Attack 2WD division in his Hyundai Genesis Coupe, is shifting to the Unlimited field to challenge Tajima and the record.

The Red Bull driver set the new world record of 12:09.397 last summer in the Time Attack event on the 156-turn mountain course, beating his own personal best by 22 seconds, coming home 1:23 ahead of the next fastest car in his division.

Also lining up in the dramatic field in the Unlimited divison is the storied veteran Paul Dallenbach, last year's Open Wheel Champion. Dallenbach is a three-time Overall Champion and 5-time Division Winner, and since 1989 has participated in the race an astounding 14 times and is considered one of the most popular racers in the event's rich history.

"I welcome these champions as rivals this summer," said Tajima. "And I look forward to the return of my Ford Fiesta competitors from last year's race, because all of us share the dream of breaking the ten-minute barrier and making history."

Australian driver Jeff Deanmeade is heading for the Race To The Clouds to enter the Time Attack Class in his Lancer Evolution 8. The car will be shipped from Sydney to Los Angeles in April, then trucked to Colorado Springs.

2009 champions returning are Millen, Dallenbach, Tajima, David Hennessy (Motorcycle Sidecar), Joe Prussiano (Motorcycle 450CC), James Vidmar, jr. (Motorcycle Quad 500), Stuart Sinclair (Motorcycle Supermoto), Davey Durelle (Motorycle 750 CC), Greg Tracy (Motorcycle 1205 CC), Randy Schranz (Exhibition Car/Truck- but shifting to the Pikes Peak Open Class for 2010), and Clint Vahsholtz (Super Stock Car).

Hill Climb officials have approved a new class for 2010, the Powersports Class to the Motorcycle competition. This class is designed, but not limited to the new and popular UTV's, 750CC ATV's and larger and Electric Motorcycles.

Other new classes added to the event this year are Electric, Rally America, Open, Open Light, Group 2, Group 5, Production, production GT and Super Production.

"We expect another fantastic Race To The Clouds in 2010," says Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Chairman Bob Gillis. "I think we set a new standard last summer for thousands of fans and the domestic and international motor sports family in terms of exposure and awareness of this special race. I think we can exceed that in 2010."

The popular Fan Fest, presented by Budweiser, which attracted almost 35,000 fans to downtown Colorado Springs to meet the drivers and racers, see their cars, trucks and motorcycles, and enjoy music, food and special events, is set for Friday, June 25, from 5:00-10:00 p.m.

Race tickets & camping permits are now available for purchase through the PPIHC web site (http://www.ppihc.com)

Tickets:

General Admission - $40 (Race Day $45)

VIP - $80 (start line area only); includes: breakfast, lunch and beverages
pre-purchase only, not available on race day

Family 4-Pack - $125 (4 general admission tickets; reg. price $160)
pre-purchase only, not available on race day

Camping - $75 until May 1; only 200 permits are available. This is the only day camping is allowed on Pikes Peak each year.

Tickets are available at:
866-464-2626
Colorado Springs Ticketswest office: 719-576-2626
TicketsWest Box Office locations
King Soopers locations

-source: www.ppihc.com

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About this article
Series Hillclimb
Drivers Rhys Millen , Marcus Gronholm , Clint Vahsholtz , Paul Dallenbach , Andreas Eriksson , Greg Tracy