Dumas, Donohue and Foust Headline Porsche Customer Programs at America’s Mountain
A Dozen Porsche Privateer Entries Vie for Top Honors at Pikes Peak
Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA.
A dozen Porsche privateer entries will vie for top honors in the 99th running of the Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb brought to you Gran Turismo on June 27. Porsche-built and Porsche-based race cars will compete in three classes at the world’s most famous hill climb event: Time Attack 1, Pikes Peak Open and the one-make Porsche Pikes Peak Trophy by Yokohama. Among the elite drivers who will seek to carve their name in the Mountain’s storied history include Porsche factory driver Romain Dumas (France), sports car champion and Pikes Peak veteran David Donohue (West Chester, Pennsylvania) and popular racer, stunt driver and television host Tanner Foust (Newport Beach, California). In total, 12 cars carrying the Porsche crest are entered in the “Race to the Clouds” near Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Dumas returns to Pikes Peak as the current track record holder seeking the quickest time in a Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport entered by Florida dealer Champion Porsche in Time Attack 1. The French sports car and rally ace will face steep competition from within the Porsche family by Rolex 24 At Daytona victor Donohue who is looking for redemption in the Division piloting a BBi Autosport-readied Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport. In 2020, Donohue entered the second sector of the 12.42-mile, 156-turn circuit with a record-setting pace when an incident took him out of contention. Racing for the first-time at Pikes Peak in the Time Attack 1 Division will be Laurent Millara (France) in a 2008 Porsche 911 GT3 and Steve Zimmer (Luxemburg) in a modified his Porsche Cayman GT4.
2021 marks the fourth year of the Porsche Pikes Peak Trophy by Yokohama. The five-car invitation-only division has full technical support from Porsche Motorsport North America (PMNA) and Yohohama Tire. Foust looks to follow-up on an extremely successful test driving the No. 34 BBi Autosport-readied and Porsche Colorado Springs-supported Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport with a victory. However, the popular driver and host will have a far from easy task in capturing the one-make Porsche division. Returning for 2021 will be Kathryn Mead (Austin, Texas) in the No. 50 Porsche she used to capture last year’s overall Rookie of the Year award. Local George Hess returns driving the No. 744 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport as does Charles “Chas” Wirken (Mesa, Arizona) in the No. 903.
Cameron “Cam” Ingram (Durham, North Carolina) is the fifth entry in the class. Ingram – whose Road Scholars is a longtime supporter of eight-time event winner and Porsche Pikes Peak Trophy division coach Jeff Zwart (Aspen, Colorado/Long Beach, California) – is making his competition debut in the new mid-engine Porsche. The choice to enter the event comes after he and his family’s longtime relationship with the brand. He was inspired to enter the race after his family lost several highly collectible Porsche road and race cars to a natural gas explosion in a building near where they housed much of their famous collection in North Carolina. The event spurred Ingram to finally live his dream of racing the cars.
The division with the greatest potential to set the fastest time up to the finish line is Pikes Peak Open where three drivers are entered with highly modified Porsche-based race cars. Leading the way will be Raphael Astier (French-native now living in Huntington Beach, California) who holds the production-car based event record. He will campaign a newly rebodied and BBi-built turbocharged, machine based on a 2015 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car. The car has been highly modified to target the Open class record. Andy Kingsley (Buena Vista, Colorado) will seek the fastest time in a modified twin-turbocharged 2002 Porsche 911. A crowd favorite will again be Colorado Springs’s Chris Strauch. The local draws interest not only for his hometown hero status but by the highly modified 1970 Porsche 914 “Wide Body” he has entered.
The 12.42-mile, two-lane road winds over 156 turns as it climbs from its 9,390-foot starting line, up Pikes Peak to the finish at 14,115-feet. The all-time race record is seven-minutes, 57.148-seconds set by Dumas in 2018 driving the electric Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak prototype race car. The current Time Attack 1 record for production-based cars is 9:23.721 established in 2019 by French rally racer Astier in a modified Porsche 911 GT3 Cup race car which had been fitted with a turbocharger. Travis Pastrana (Annapolis, Maryland) holds the Porsche Pikes Peak Trophy by Yokohama course record in a Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport at 10:33.897 set the first year of the division, 2018.
The 12 entries are coming off a multi-day test (June 11 – 13) which gave each car/driver combination an opportunity to experience a section of the full track. No competitor will have the opportunity to run the entire distance until his or her official timed lap on race day. Official practice and qualifying days will be held June 22 – 24.
The first Pikes Peak Hill Climb was run in 1916 on a gravel circuit carved up to the Mountain’s summit. By 2012, the full 12.42-mile, 156-turn circuit was paved over, up to the 14,115-foot pinnacle. The race itself starts at the seven-mile marker giving competitors a 4,725-foot elevation change during their timed run.
More information, coverage and results can be found at: www.ppihc.org/ .
Erik Skirmants, Event Manager, Pikes Peak, Porsche Motorsport North America.
"With testing completed for all of our Porsche Pikes Peak Trophy competitors, we are really looking forward to them challenging each other and the mountain in their equal Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsports. The times that our drivers achieve in comparison to the overall field always leaves an impressive reminder that the Clubsport cars are leaders in speed and reliability. Year after year they make the most testing runs on the mountain and coupled with the impressive Yokohama radials, need no maintenance pass after pass. The excitement is also building for the overall results Porsche will achieve again this year. The high-level efforts in Time Attack 1 from BBi Autosport and Champion Porsche, with their Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport-based builds, and the many other Porsche race cars; notably the BBi ‘Turbo Cup’ effort in the Open class, will leave us a chance to root for King of the Mountain opportunities.”
Tanner Foust, Driver, No. 34 BBi Autosport Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport.
“The last time I race up Pikes Peak was 2005 and I’m very honored that Porsche Motorsport has invited me this year to drive one of the very impressive 718 Cayman GT4’s up such a challenging and historic road. I’m amazed at the times the GT4 lays down in such a difficult environment. It’s the perfect race tool to use for my reintroduction to one of world’s greatest hill climbs. The test weekend was so much fun! The Porsche 718 Cayman Clubsport GT4 performed flawlessly, scaling the mountain effortlessly. The Yokohamas were grippier than I thought they would be and combined with the balance of the Porsche made for some very high mid-corner speeds. The commitment needed to carry momentum with the paved road is crazy, especially with all the cliffs, but the few moments I did have were predictable and manageable with this chassis/ tire combination. I had a great three days and am ready to go at it again. Travis Pastrana has the current record, and if conditions allow that’s my target!”
Cam Ingram, Driver, No. 9 Road Scholars Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport.
“I decided to make my dream of racing Pikes Peak a reality last year and started the process of making it so. I'd like my journey to Pikes Peak to inspire other people to keep evolving and chase their dreams. Porsche is one of the few brands in the world that can provide the full 360-degree experience of achieving your goals in motorsports. I've really enjoyed balancing my work, physical training, Porsche Track experience and now a direct relationship with PMNA. It's a challenge I'm taking very seriously, and also the toughest thing I've ever attempted to do.”
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