NOTES & QUOTES FROM JULY 1 AUTO/TRUCK PRACTICE ON THE PEAK
Electric Car on the Mountain...Honda is running an electric car based on its production vehicle, the EV Plus. The rear-wheel drive car, which seats four to five passengers, has an electric motor with a battery pack in the passenger seat. "Most people don't think electric cars will go very far," noted Greg Thomas, senior engineer for Honda Research & Development. "What better way to demonstrate your technology than to run it on Pikes Peak?" Thomas recently presented the Hill Climb Museum with Honda's first Hill Climb electric car, run in the 1994 race. "We have a racing museum in Tokyo," he noted. "But the car was built only for Pikes Peak and we felt it belonged here."
From super stock car driver Bob Nankivell (Sedalia, Colo.): "Yesterday I made a mistake in the sun and tore out my left front suspension [during practice]. It was horrible. But everything looks good today."
From super stock truck driver Chad DeVries (Wheatridge, Colo.), a three-time Hill Climb competitor and the 1997 Rookie of the Year: "I ran my fastest time ever in the mid-section and up top [during practice]. I'm having a pretty good year so far...There's no other mountain like this. It's the ultimate. Even just to finish is a huge victory."
From super stock car driver Chandler Bruning (Colorado Springs): "Things are going quite well for me, but I'm spending too much time getting my dad's car back together [following a crash prior to the Hill Climb]. That's what it means to be a part of a team, I guess. We just put the motor in last night, and he [Ralph Bruning Sr.] is going to try to race. We're hoping. We really want to see him do it."
"It's a very close field this year-there are probably six people who could win it easily. I'm just hoping for a clean run with no mistakes. I want to make it to the top."
From super stock car competitor Gay Smith (Colorado Springs): "I'd say it's a record setting course. I just hope it's me that sets the record."
From Bobby Regester Jr., crew member and son of super stock car competitor Bobby Regester (Florissant, Colo.): "We're doing a lot better today. We've been fighting all kinds of problems [during practice]-suspension, steering, electrical. We're starting to get it together...The course is in real good shape, the best we've ever seen it."
Unofficial times from today's practice session on the Peak will be posted on the Hill Climb web site, www.ppihc.com, later today.
Auto and truck qualifying will be held from 5:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. tomorrow, July 2, running from the start line to Glen Cove on the Pikes Peak Highway. Motorcycle and quad practice will run during the same time period from Glen Cove to the Summit. A complete schedule of the week's remaining Hill Climb events follows this release.
Tickets for the 1999 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb are available for $25 per person online at http://www.ppihc.com, the Hill Climb Auto Educational Museum in Manitou Springs, King Soopers throughout Colorado, Tire Centers Inc. in Colorado Springs, the U.S. Air Force Academy, and Colorado Springs military installations.
The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is held annually on July 4 in cooperation with the City of Colorado Springs and the U.S. Forest Service. The Race attracts an international field of auto, truck, and motorcycle competitors. Its 12.42-mile course on a groomed gravel highway to the 14,110 ft. summit of Pikes Peak is open to the public.