Dallenbach Sets Pikes Peak Benchmark
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Paul Dallenbach set the fastest time during qualifying for the Pikes Peak Int’l Hill Climb, but it didn’t come without a bit of controversy.
Dallenbach, running in the Unlimited class, completed the qualifying course in 4:01.747. However, he was actually second fastest during qualifying behind Jean Phillippe Dayraut’s time of 3:54.956. It was later announced that Dayraut’s time was being disallowed by sanctioning body USAC because Dayraut ignored a red flag from a course worker.
That gives Dallenbach the top spot on the board for Sunday’s event, giving him the opportunity to choose when he makes his pass up the mountain when it comes time for the Unlimited class to run.
Nobuhiro Tajima, a multi-time winner at Pikes Peak, was fastest in the Electric division. Tajima bested his closest rival by more than 10 seconds after completing the qualifying course in 4:13.343.
Other class top qualifiers included Rhys Millen (Time Attack), Romain Dumas (Pikes Peak Open), Jason Archuleta (250), Craig Gleason (450), Jeff Grace (750), Carlin Dunne (1205), Rick Knoop (Exhibition), Mike Applehans (Exhibition Powersport), Spencer Steele (Open Wheel), Steve Tutt (Quad Modified), Wade Boyd (Sidecar), Layne Schranz (Super Stock Car), Bobby Spann (Vintage) and Ralf Christensson (Vintage Automobile Division).
This year marks the first time in the history of the event that the entire race will be contested on paved track. The remaining portion of the track that was still gravel was paved last August. As a result, a track record is expected to be set this year.
The current track record is 9:51.278 and was set by Nobuhiro Tajima in 2011.