Dec 16, 2010 1:14 AM
A pair of famed champions with a long record of success will return for the 2011 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb next summer as the storied race take place for the 89th time on June 26.
The legendary Rhys Millen will return to the mountain for the 19th time and another attempt to crack the storied ten-minute barrier in the Unlimited division after finishing third last year. He'll be behind the wheel again of his Hyundai Genesis RMR PM580, sponsored by Red Bull and Hankook Tires.
Millen (Huntington Beach, CA), who set two world records on Pikes Peak and won six times over the years, switched to the Unlimited field last summer for the first time.
With more than 17 years of racing experience, Millen has established himself as one of the premier rally/drifting drivers in North America. Born in New Zealand in 1972, he is the son of famed rally and off-road racer Rod Millen, who won PPIHC championships three times.
He joined his father in the U.S. as a teenager and soon afterwards established himself as a racer by taking first place at the Pikes Peak Hill Climb in the Open Division and winning Rookie of the Year. He won the Formula Drift championship in 2005 and the Red Bull Drifting World Championship in 2008.
Headed for Colorado Springs again is Gary Trachy (Orange, CA), the champion in the Motorcycle 750CC Division last summer with a world, course and class record of 11.33. It was his seventh PPIHC triumph in a great career.
Trachy will be riding a TM 660 SMX on the mountain in June with an eye on keeping his title of the fastest rider ever in the event.
The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is the second oldest motorsports race in America behind the Indianapolis 500 and a long-standing tradition in Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak Region. It began in 1916, and this year marks the 89th running of the "Race to the Clouds."
The race is run on a 12.42 mile course with 156 turns that begins at 9,390 feet and finishes at the 14,110 foot summit of America's Mountain. As the drivers climb toward the summit, the thin air slows reflexes and saps muscle strength. The thin air also robs engines of 30% of their power at the summit. Competitors, vehicles and motorcycles must be in top shape simply to finish, let alone win!
The popular Fan Fest, which annually attracts more than 35,000 fans, is set for Friday evening, June 24, in downtown Colorado Springs.
Tickets and camping permits are available now at www.PPIHC.com, where fans can click on the "Shop" heading and purchase.