Strong Rally America Ties Throughout Pikes Peak International Hill Climb
As the Rally America National Championship prepares for its return to action with next month’s Rally Colorado in Rangeley, impatient race fans in the Centennial State have this weekend’s Pikes Peak International Hill Climb to hold them over. The annual event will see a confirmed 55 cars and 22 motorcycles tackle its 12.42 miles of paved mountain roads, and a number of those entrants have strong Rally America ties.
Perhaps the biggest name in the entire event, four-time Rally America national champion Travis Pastrana headlines the brand new Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport class as one of eight drivers. The new, one-make class is the first of its type in PPIHC history, and will see Pastrana roll off second in class and 21st on the overall start order.
Last year’s Rally America 2WD national champion James Robinson will leave the line 14th, fourth in the Time Attack 1 class, in a 2017 Acura NSX. Robinson is one of three Honda Racing/HPD drivers to take on the Race to the Clouds in a factory-backed Acura, joining sports car legend Peter Cunningham and fellow Rally America veteran Jordan Guitar; Guitar will contest a 2019 Acura RDX in the Exhibition class, rolling off 48th overall.
Robinson isn’t the only one with Rally America ties to be competing in Time Attack 1, though. Scott Crouch, who won the series’ inaugural Production GT championship as co-driver for Tanner Foust, has since switched to driving, and will start 39th. Not long after, Giorgio Leporati of Italy will take off in the O.D.D. Racing Ford Fiesta ST that Cameron Steely and Preston Osborn formerly campaigned in the series’ 2WD class.
One of the mountain’s most legendary drivers, Rhys Millen’s diverse motorsports career has led him through nearly every discipline, including stints in both stage rally and rallycross as a driver and car builder under the Rally America banner. Millen, who set the EV world record at Pikes Peak two years ago, rolls off 29th overall and second in the Exhibition class in a Bentley Bentayga.
Finally, plenty of current and former Rally America competitors and sponsors will be on hand at Pikes Peak. Foust himself will be there to spectate Volkswagen Motorsport’s quest for a new EV world record with driver Romain Dumas, while Tag Rally Sport’s Tracey Gardiner will also be on hand, one month before returning to the driver’s seat at Rally Colorado.