For years they doubted whether it would ever happen, but last weekend it finally did. The ten minute barrier has been broken on the Pikes Peak Hillclimb in Colorado. What is Pikes Peak you ask? Probably one of the few reamining ‘truly bonkers’ motorsport events. A hillclimb which starts on tarmac but ends on dirt, is 12.42 miles long, and finishes 156 turns later at 14,110 feet above sea level.
Cars competing in the event have to run with oversize wings as the air gets so thin at the higher altitude that it effects downforce levels. It also saps energy from the drivers as they struggle to control their cars, some of which produce over 900 bhp. The thinner air slows reflexes and reduces muscle strength.
This year, Nobuhiro ‘Monster’ Tajima piloted his racecar (which is very loosly based on a Suzuki SX4) to the sumit in a time of 9mins 51 secs – eclipsing his previous record set in 2007 by a whle 10 secs.