Hyundai returns to Pikes Peak International Hill Climb

Hyundai will return to the legendary Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in America, also known as “The Race to the Clouds”, in June this year with a four-car team. This year’s race to the summit on America’s Mountain will mark another milestone in Hyundai’s long history with the event, an effort that began in 1992 in Colorado. 

Hyundai will enter the 2024 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (PPIHC) with a stellar driver line-up:

  • Paul Dallenbach – Eleven-time Pikes Peak International Hill Climb winner who set the overall record in 1993;
  • Robin Shute – Four-time overall winner and King of the Mountain title holder at Pikes Peak;
  • Daniel “Dani” Sordo – Spanish World Rally Championship driver for Hyundai Motorsport; and
  • A fourth driver who will be announced at a later date. 

Hyundai will announce at a future event which race cars the drivers will be piloting and the records they intend to chase. 

“The driver is one of the most critical elements for success at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb,” said Till Wartenberg, Hyundai vice president and head of N Brand and Motorsport at the announcement last week of Hyundai’s re-entry in the Pikes Peak Hill Climb. 

“We have selected top experts like Robin Shute and Paul Dallenbach who have won the event overall and in class 15 times. Both these drivers have an incredible track record and know the climb well. The addition of Hyundai Motorsports WRC driver Dani Sordo is very exciting and will help us engage a global audience for the hill climb.”

“Pikes Peak is one of the unique and historical challenges still left in motorsports,” said Randy Parker, CEO of Hyundai Motor America. “It has stood the test of time because the mountain never relents. The weather makes getting a clean run extremely difficult and to conquer the mountain everything must go perfectly. A tremendous amount of preparation and a little bit of luck is required to break and set records. Going to Pikes Peak will prove the fortitude that these four vehicles have.” 

“The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb represents a unique and exciting new challenge for our team because Hyundai already has a rich history of participating in the event going back 30 years,” said Bryan Herta, president and CEO of Bryan Herta Autosport. “We’re relying on a lot of experts in the event as well as Hyundai’s engineering and experience. We want to show what the Hyundai vehicles can do in one of the toughest challenges in motorsport.”

Hyundai is also bringing in technicians and crew members that have vast experience of working at Pikes Peak. They understand the track, the weather, and the need to be mobile when moving up and down the mountain during practice.

History of Hyundai on Pikes Peak

1992 – This was the first year a Hyundai is noted as competing on Pikes Peak. Rod Millen won the 2-

Wheel Drive Showroom Stock division in a time of 13:21.17. He drove a Hyundai Scoupé equipped with the company’s new turbocharged, 16-valve, dual overhead camshaft Alpha series engine. 

1993 – Rod Millen finished 2nd in the Pikes Peak Open division in a 1993 Hyundai Elantra in 11:57.34. 

1996 – Paul Choiniere finished 2nd in his rookie year on Pikes Peak, in the Pikes Peak Open division in a 1996 Hyundai Elantra in 11:49.83.

1997 – Paul Choiniere won the Pikes Peak Open division in a 1997 Hyundai Tiburon in 11:56.79.

1998 – Paul Choiniere placed 2nd in the Pikes Peak Open division in a ’97 Hyundai Tiburon in 12:09.24.

1999 – Rookie Andrew Bomhop placed 3rd in Pikes Peak Open in a 1996 Hyundai Elantra in 12:39.62, while Paul Choiniere did not finish in his 1999 Tiburon with John Buffum’s Libra Racing team.

2000 – Paul Choiniere returned to the Pikes Peak Open division in a 2000 Hyundai Tiburon, finishing 2nd in 11:26.05.

2002 – Paul Choiniere claimed 2nd in Open Rally in a 2003 Hyundai Tiburon in 12:11.30. Rookie Mark Higgins raced a 2003 Hyundai Tiburon in the same division but failed to finish.

2004 – Andrew Barnes and navigator, Leuan Thomas – both Pikes Peak rookies – finished 3rd in their Tiburon in Rally Group O in 12:41.40.

2009 – Rhys Millen won the Time Attack 2-Wheel Drive division in a 2010 Hyundai Genesis in 12:09.397, setting a division record. 

2010 – Rhys Millen finished 3rd in the Unlimited division in a RMR JE09 race car in 11:06.208.

2011 – Rhys Millen and his son, Rod, raced in two divisions, both in Hyundai models. Rhys finished 2nd in the Unlimited division behind Japan’s Nobuhiro Tajima, who finally shattered the 10-minute barrier with a course record time of 09:51.278. Rhys’ time was 10:09.242 in his Hyundai RMR PM58. Rod claimed the win in the Time Attack 2-Wheel Drive division in his Hyundai Genesis Coupé with a time of 11:04.912, a division record. Lauchlin O’Sullivan drove a 2012 Hyundai Veloster in the Pikes Peak Open division but did not finish.

2012 – Rhys Millen won King of the Mountain and set the fastest time overall, as well as a course record in the process. For this 90th running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, he entered a 2012 Hyundai Genesis Coupé in the Time Attack division and clocked a time of 09:46.164. This was the first year the course was completely paved. 

2013 – Rhys Millen returned, this time in the Unlimited division. He piloted his 2013 Hyundai PM580T to the summit in 09:02.192, capturing 2nd place. Only rally driver Sébastien Loeb was faster, earning King of the Mountain honours for Peugeot and setting a new course record of 08:13.878. Paul Dallenbach won the Time Attack division in his 2013 Hyundai Genesis Coupé in 09:46.001, a new division record.

2014 – Pikes Peak rookie Jonathan Newcombe raced a 2008 Tiburon to the summit in 11:37.084 for a 9th place finish in the Time Attack 1 division. 

2015 – Jonathan Newcombe returned in his Tiburon but did not finish in the TA1 division.

2016 – Jonathan Newcombe made his third appearance on the mountain for the 100th anniversary of this iconic race, entering his Tiburon once again in TA1. He finished 10th with a time of 11:30.766.

2017 – Two Hyundais were entered in the A1 division. Newcombe returned in a Tiburon for his fourth appearance but did not finish. Rhys Millen entered a 2012 Hyundai Genesis Coupé, winning the division in 09:47.427. 

2018 – Jonathan Newcombe entered the Tiburon in the TA1 division but failed to start on race day.  

Pikes Peak International Hill Climb       

The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (PPIHC), also known as The Race to the Clouds, is an annual automobile hill climb to the summit of Pikes Peak in Colorado in America on public roads. The course measures 19,99 km and features over 156 turns, climbing 1 440 m from the start at Mile 7 on Pikes Peak Highway to the finish line at 4 302 m, with gradients averaging 7,2%.

The course used to consist of gravel and paved sections, but from August 2011 it has been fully paved, and all subsequent events have been run on asphalt from start to finish. The race is self-sanctioned and has taken place since 1916. It is currently contested by a variety of vehicle classes, attracting a wide array of machinery. The PPIHC operates as the Pikes Peak Auto Hill Climb Educational Museum to organize the annual motorsport event.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Copyright © 2023 Women Torque. All rights reserved. Made by Trultimate