Colorado Springs, CO. The Qualifying runs were completed Thursday for the 92nd running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb and fastest time for the Open Wheel Class was no surprise – Paul Dallenbach. Driving the 98 car and shattering the old record of 4:07.8, Dallenbach posted a time of 4:02.5.
"The car handled great up there and gave me the confidence to push harder," remarked Dallenbach, "Loophole Racing has done an amazing job prepping the car so I am really having fun driving this car on Pikes Peak."
Qualifying runs are completed on the first half of the course, ending just before Glen Cove. The Open Wheel Class is the traditional race car on Pikes Peak. Their appearance ranges from an Indy car style to a dune buggies. Open wheel cars have competed in every Pikes Peak International Hill Climb since the first race in 1916. Dallenbach is returning to the Open Wheel Class this year after setting the World Record in the Time Attack division last year. He is driving the Number 98, Open Wheel car with a small block Chevy engine producing 750 HP, purposely built for Pikes Peak and adapted over time for changing road conditions.
Paul’s Crew, Loophole Racing of Colorado Springs, is lead by owners David and Bud Hoffpauir. They lost their homes and shop in the Black Forest fire last year so this is an exciting return to the mountain for them as well. Their talented team includes Scott Gross, David LaPerche, Tony Peak, Alan Smith and Steve Woods.
Paul & his car will be at Fan Fest tonight, Friday, June 27th, in Downtown Colorado Springs from 5:00-10:00 p.m. This event is free and typically attracts 35,000 race fans from all over the country, and features a beer garden, chili cook-off, motorcycle jumpers as well as other live entertainment. Top race qualifiers, including Dallenbach, will display their vehicles (cars, quads, motorcycles, etc.), give driver demos and be present for autograph sessions.
Paul’s appearance this year at the PPIHC is made possible through his sponsors, Famous Dave’s BBQ, Alpine Bank, Hoosier Race Tires, PPG, Unser Racing, and BRM Watches. “We are fortunate to have sponsors who are so generous and into racing, actively participating in our race preparation,” remarks Dallenbach, “It is great to have them as partners and great to have them on the mountain, cheering me on.”
Race Day is Sunday, June 29th. Last year, a crowd estimated at 8,093 race fans, officials, accredited news media, driver and racer crews lined the course to watch.