Pikes Peak Int'l news 2010-06-17

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Malcolm Smith - Motorcyle Legend, Hall of Famer Enters 88th Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Colorado Springs, June 17----- Malcolm Smith, one of the world's most famous motorcycle racers, will compete in the Pikes Peak International Hill...

Malcolm Smith - Motorcyle Legend, Hall of Famer Enters 88th Pikes Peak International Hill Climb

Colorado Springs, June 17----- Malcolm Smith, one of the world's most famous motorcycle racers, will compete in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb on June 27.

Smith (Riverside, CA) will compete in the Quad 750 Division on his 2009 Husaberg 570, a Swedish bike, in a 750 field that includes defending champion Joe Prussiano (Conroe, Texas), 2009 runnerup Eddie Tafoya (Chino Hills, California) and third-place finisher Travis Newbold (Montrose, Colorado).

His son, Alexander, is competing in the 1250 Motorcycle division on the brand-new Ducati Mutistrada along with Ducati teammate Greg Tracy, a four-time Pikes Peak champion.

"I just got bored helping out on Pikes Peak, so I decided to enter this year and bring along my bike. Alexander and I got up at 4:00 a.m. last week and drove to Las Vegas to test our motorcycles, and we both did well, so I'm excited about coming to Colorado Springs again.

Malcolm Smith first competed on the Hill in the 1981 Pikes Peak Hill Climb, taking the crown in the Colorado Celebrity 500 Motorcycle Run.

He has been inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame (1996) and the Motorcycle Hall of Fame (1998).

Smith, born in 1941 in British Columbia, grew up with a fascination for mechanical things, and from the first time he rode his Labretta motor scooter in 1954 he was hooked. By 1956 he entered his first race on a 1949 Matchless. Since then he has tried just about every kind of racing.

Raised in Southern California, he was thirteen years old when he scraped enough money together to purchase his first motorcycle, a 1954 Lambretta scooter that now sits in the Malcolm Smith Motorsports Museum.

He quickly outgrew the scooter and moved on to a 1949 Matchless G80 that he would win his first race with.

"After that first race, it was all downhill from there," says Smith of the start of his incredible racing career. He would quickly gain the reputation of being a formidable opponent at the local races, but Malcolm had bigger goals than just winning local races. In the late 1960's he celebrated his first international successes, earning a silver medal at the 1966 ISDT and winning the first ever Baja 1000 the very next year.

Smith had become famous for being the first American to race the Italian-built Husquvarna Motorcycles. His partnership with Husquvarna would span five decades and become the most storied racer/brand partnership in the sports history. The Malcolm Smith Motorsports Museum is filled with various Husquvarna motorcycles that Malcolm raced or rode during his professional and non-professional career.

He is a six-time winner -- three times on a motorcycle and three times in a car -- of the Baja 1000, off-road racing's version of the Indy 500; a four-time winner of the Baja 500; a two-time winner of the Mint 400; and a two-time winner of the Roof of Africa Rallye. As a tune-up for the Paris-Dakar Rally in 1987 he won the 1987 Rallye D'Atlas in Morocco in an off-road buggy.

One of the world's premier off-road motorcycle racers, Smith won eight gold medals (see below) between 1966 and 1976 in the International Six Day Trials, the European cross-country event considered the World Crown of motorcycling.

* 1966 Sweden Silver
* 1967 Poland Gold
* 1969 Germany Gold
* 1970 Spain Gold
* 1971 Isle of Mann Gold
* 1973 USA Gold
* 1974 Italy Gold, 1975 Isle of Mann Gold
* 1976 Austria Gold

Smith's talent on two-wheels earned him a co-starring role in Bruce Brown's 1970's classic motorcycle epic, On Any Sunday with Steve McQueen. The notoriety that followed the movie elevated him to legendary status. Yet his modest demeanor and "Ah shucks" attitude is what contributed most to his folk hero stature.

In 1974 a serious motorcycle accident laid Malcolm up long enough to have him take a serious look at racing four-wheeled vehicles. He immediately rose to the top of that field. Twice Malcolm participated in the Paris-Dakar Rally, a 22-day event in Northern Africa -- "the most miserable piece of work an off-road racer will ever see". Only 151 of the 603 cars, trucks and motorcycles starting the race made it to the finish in 1988. Entering in 1986 as Press Corp, and then in 1988 as a driver for the Camel Racing Service/Range Rover/Elf Racing Team. Smith and his navigator, Alain Fieuw, piloted their specially prepared Range Rover to a fourth-place finish -- the highest ever for an American at that time.

The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is the second oldest motorsports race in America and a long-standing tradition in Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak Region. It began in 1916, and this year marks the 88th running of the "Race to the Clouds." The race is run on a 12.42 mile course with 156 turns that begins at 9,390 feet and finishes at the 14,110 foot summit of America's Mountain. As the drivers climb toward the summit, the thin air slows reflexes and saps muscle strength. The thin air also robs engines of 30% of their power at the summit. Competitors and vehicles must be in top shape simply to finish, let alone win!

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.

Fans wanting to be on the Hill on June 27 to see the 2010 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb can purchase tickets now with several attractive options.

A Family 4-Pack is available for four at a price of $125.00 and advance General Admission tickets are priced at $40.00. Camping permits are also available for the only day of the year when camping is allowed on the mountain.

Last summer, more than 4,000 fans made their way to spots along the course to see the nation's second-oldest motor sports event that made its debut in 1916.

Race tickets & camping permits are now available for purchase through the PPIHC web site (www.ppihc.com) as well as by telephone.

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 - Permit fees will be $100; only 200 permits are available. This is the only day camping is allowed on Pikes Peak each year.

By Phone: Tickets are available at: (Toll Free) 866-464-2626 or Colorado Springs TicketsWest office: 719-576-2626

-source: ppihc

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