ProRally: Pikes Peak: Pre-qualifying news

SCCA® ProRallysm Championship Round 6 Pikes Peak International Hillclimb COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo Seventeen SCCA ProRally teams rolled through this mornings Scrutineering session, in preparation for their one shot at the 'worlds greatest...

SCCA® ProRallysm Championship Round 6
Pikes Peak International Hillclimb

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo Seventeen SCCA ProRally teams rolled through this mornings Scrutineering session, in preparation for their one shot at the 'worlds greatest special stage' a term coined by overall record holder Rod Millen, that so aptly describes the Pikes Peak International Hillclimb. Drivers, co-drivers and crew have been acclimating themselves to the high altitudes for several days now, and are all looking forward to tomorrows early morning practice sessions that will give them their first taste of the peak at speed.

Late Breaking News:
· Weather: At 14,000 feet, the weather is anything but predictable, and the fires that have consumed hundreds of thousands of acres of standing timber in the nearby Pikes National Forest have created an uncharacteristic haze that surrounds much of the mountain, and the host city of Colorado Springs. The fire-fighters have had good luck in the area over the last several days, and much of the huge Hayman fire is now contained, and poses no threat to the operations of the Hillclimb.

· This first time participation at the Peak as a Championship round for SCCA ProRally, while awarding no points to the drivers, is, however a full points event for the Manufacturers - and all three, Hyundai, Mitsubishi, and Subaru, are all working overtime to put their cars on the summit fastest. With just one shot at the 12.5 mile stage, but with maximum points up for grabs, Saturday morning's Race to the Clouds will be quite the shootout.

· An early retirement has struck the Knight racing team, which had three cars entered. The #49 entry of Jonathan Ryther/Roger Loeffers was withdrawn late yesterday due to what Ryther described as a shortage of time - "my car had all new motor, turbo and engine management - we had it all together, but just ran out of time to get it all working as well as we wanted - so we concentrated on the other two cars, to make sure they were right for the Peak." o The Knight Racing team's two remaining cars, the #49 car of Lon Peterson and John Elkin, and the #259 car of Scott and Robert Trinder successfully made it through what may be the worlds highest Scrutineering session (9,000 ft) - at the nearly dry Crystal Reservoir, a dramatic reminder of the extreme drought this part of the country is experiencing.

· Tire choice is always critical at Pikes Peak, and this years additional paved surfaces have a lot of teams - both in the SCCA ProRally division, and others, pondering a variety of ideas. Hyundai Rally Team USA - fielding two Open class cars, are trying two different setups for testing tomorrow - Mark Higgins will be using 'conventional' rally tires, and Paul Choiniere will be using a set of European rallycross tires - designed for use on both tarmac and gravel. With nearly identical cars, the results could be dramatic - or barely significant at all.

The SCCA ProRally Championship is presented by Hyundai, Mitsubishi and Subaru, and is televised in North America on SpeedChannel. Time and date listing information available at www.speedtv.com

-scca pro racing-

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About this article
Series SCCA
Drivers Paul Choiniere