PPIHC: Motorcycles Shatter 10 Minute Barrier at Pikes Peak

08/12/2012 @ 9:41 pm, by Jensen Beeler20 COMMENTS

With the road to the summit of Pikes Peak fully-paved now, riders not only had to contend with learning the 156 corners that comprise the race to the clouds, but they also had to learn the new asphalt sections that were paved after last year’s race. Getting three days of practice and sunshine on the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb course, on Saturday the weather hit the reset button, bringing rain down on the mountain, which made the road very green for racing the next day.

The sun returned for Sunday’s set of races though, with the motorcycles leading the charge up Pikes Peak. As with the previous years, the talk of class records falling was again high on the discussion list, which is unsurprising since Pikes Peak has added new pavement sections each year to the course. Though, with the asphalt now going all the way to the summit, the big question this year was by what margin the records would fall, and in the motorcycle category, whether a new class of motorcycle would dominate the mountain.

With most of the field still comprised of supermoto bikes and a handful of flat trackers, the 1205cc class showed the most diversity in entries, with BMW, Ducati, Harley-Davidson, and KTM all represented. The PPIHC crew isn’t keen on full-fledged sport bikes racing on the mountain, relegating those entries that did show up into the exhibition class. Though many thought the sport bikers would dominate this year, it was the adventure-touring bikes in 1205cc class that would lay siege to Pikes Peak, in more than impressive style.

Shattering the 10 minute lap barrier to the summit, Carlin Dunne made a repeat victory and course record with his 9’52.819 run on the Ducati Multistrada 1200 S Pikes Peak race bike. With Dunne’s transponder failing to check in a final time at the finish, the entire paddock had to sit and wait for his result before a winner could be declared, since Greg Tracy also put in an astounding sub-10 minute run as well, with a 9’58.262 lap to the top — doing so with a vertebrae that he fractured the previous Sunday, shooting a commercial for Ducati & Audi.

With the motorcycles getting fairly good weather on the mountain, the rest of the classes were not as fortunate. With rain, hail, and snow reported at the summit, the car classes had to contend with the changing conditions, and a bevy of red flags, before they could get all their races completed. One of the longest hill climbs in duration ever at Pikes Peak, the day saw Rhys Millen set an outright course record of 9’46.164 in the Time Attack class on his Hyundai drift car.

Of course, the real feat is Dunne and Tracy’s times, which were the third and fourth fastest overall for the day, respectively — on fairly stock adventure-touring machines, no less.

2012 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Race Results:

Pos.PICNameLap TimeSpeedHometownChassis
1205cc Motorcycle Class
31Carlin Dunne9:52.81972.872Santa Barbara CADucati
42Greg Tracy9:58.26272.209Long Beach CODucati
163Bruno Langlois11:05.34264.929Ajaccio FranceDucati
344Eddie Tafoya11:38.54561.843Chino Hills CADucati
405Michael Henao11:41.68661.566Boulder COHarley Davidson
506Jiri Heinik11:51.96760.677Czech RepublicKTM
1157Norman Meyer13:38.40852.785Conifer COBMW
1358Weston Orloff–.—0.000Mukwonago WIHarley Davidson
750cc Motorcycle Class
101Gary Trachy10:40.75367.421Orange CATM
152Jeff Grace11:02.47265.210Colorado Springs COKTM
283James McKay11:31.42362.480Dayton NVHusaberg
314Joseph Toner11:35.44962.118ScotlandKawasaki
425Marco Belli11:43.71561.388Varese ItalyOuroboros
446Mattia Riva11:44.39761.329Maslianicocomo ItalyHusaberg
487Ryan Oosterman11:49.82760.860New Ipswich NHKTM
598Joseph Connor Toner12:00.45759.962ScotlandAprilia
749Pierpaolo Vivaldi12:16.13358.685Trevenzuolo ItalySMR
7810Dan Harmon12:20.85558.311Florissant COKTM
10811Lee Summers13:14.63954.364Midland TXKTM
450cc Motorcycle Class
171Travis Newbold11:06.61864.805Montrose COHonda
192Greg Chicoine11:12.31264.256Jefferson SDKawasaki
203Daniel Berendes11:12.970Monument COHonda
214Craig Gleason11:13.78264.116San Marcos TXYamaha
245Geoff Cesmat11:20.19563.511Boulder COYamaha
256Jeff Delio11:23.47963.206Littleton COYamaha
267Chase Guthrie11:28.05662.786Mentone INDKawasaki
298Darryl Lujan11:33.56662.287Brighton COHonda
339Teague Sawyer11:38.39961.856Thornton COHonda
3710Cal Collins11:40.74961.648Chandler AZHonda
4611Tom McCarthy11:44.80761.293Des Moines IAHonda
4712Donnie Bales11:47.24161.082Murrieta CAHonda
4913Greg Nichols11:50.95160.764Boulder COYamaha
5614Mark Niemi11:59.23460.064Denison TXHonda
6015Timothy Buhler12:01.19759.900Pine COYamaha
6216Eric Monus12:01.82359.848Houston TXYamaha
6717Mark Woodward12:06.62559.453Longmont COKawasaki
6818Jim Cole12:06.68859.448Parker COYamaha
7119Justin Flater12:10.88959.106Colorado Springs COHonda
7220Thomas Specht12:13.90658.863Woodland Park COHonda
7321Doug Chestnutt12:14.89058.784Littleton COYamaha
7922Michael Kassebaum12:22.86958.153Lawrence NEHonda
8323Brandon Rader12:29.19757.662Lees Summit MOHonda
8724Ryan Radar12:37.96956.994Lees Summit MOKTM
9025Charles Ford12:39.45056.883Colorado Springs COHonda
9326Donnie Burns12:42.64256.645Colorado Springs COHonda
10427William Kitchens12:56.46255.637Houston TXAprilia
11028Chris Carr13:15.36054.315Atlanta GAKTM

Source: PPIHC; Photo: © 2012 Jensen Beeler / Asphalt & Rubber – Creative Commons – Attribution 3.0

  • wreckah

    can anyone tell me why sportsbikes are not liked on the mountain? also, if it is 100% tarmac, how come sportsbikes are not faster? is it too tight?

    i mean, it is pretty fun racing these sit-up motards (i do trackdays on my 990SM too), but you can hardly say they’re perfect for road racing : weight, seating position, ground clearance, aero’s, power,..

  • Gutterslob

    Yeah, I asked the same thing in the previous Pikes Peak article a couple of days ago.
    Wasn’t quite sure as I’ve never been to the place, but looking at the amount of aero and what little ground clearance the cars have, I’m think a full-on litrebike or something like an Aprillia Tuono 1000 would decimate the outright lap-times set by the cages.

    Not sure how much they’d gain in the higher sections where the turns are tighter and the air thinner, but they’d make a helluva lot of seconds in the flowing bits at the beginning, me thinks. Maybe they should let John McGuinness have a go next year.

  • dwolvin

    I would bet that it’s because of the brutal acceleration that a race bike has means that they would be carrying so much corner speed in that the race officials fear becoming the new IoM TT, and they don’t want the fatalities.

    Not saying it’s true, but that’s my gut feelign.

  • MikeD

    U know……….a couple of pictures of the other riders/competitors/machines besides these GLORIFIED Ugly Ducs wouldn’t hurt.

    Sure, congrats to Ducati but they ain’t the only ones risking it going up the mountain.
    It makes it look to me like a DUCATI PAID and ENDORSED Article…not the case ?
    Sure smells like it.

    P.S: I know u like Ducs…but c’mon.

  • Steve

    @ Gutterslob

    Me don’t think so!

    Rough figures:
    Superbike: 220hp for 260 kg (with 80 kg rider) = 0.85 hp/kg
    2011 Suzuki Monster Sport SX4: 910hp for 1170 kg (with 80 kg drider) = 0.78 hp/kg

    Car specs: http://www.conceptcarz.com/vehicle/default.aspx?carID=19958&i=2

    The car has a lot more traction for accelerating, braking and cornering, especially if you count the aero devices!

    Fastest electric in at 10:15! (Watch out for the next years!)

  • MikeD


    Besides the woes and havoc that temp changes bring to batts…the beauty of it AND electric motors is that they don’t give a five flying frack about DEMINISHING AIR DENSITY.

  • Woody

    On almost anything requiring traction, the fastest car will beat the fastest motorcycle. The tiny contact patch on bike tires can’t give the corner speed that four car tires can.

  • MikeD


    +1. Proven Fact.

  • MikeD, if I did that, then you’d be complaining that this story didn’t have a photo of the bike/rider that blew away the course record and gave the four-wheelers a serious run for their money on the King of the Mountain title.

    You must be confusing me with another blog that’s on an Italian manufacturer’s payroll.

  • MikeD


    That’s why i said ” besides “… The winner will be the winner(he/she will always be given the utmost attention) … but he wasn’t the only competitor.
    I don’t xpect a picture of EVERYONE that was there…but someone else besides the Ducs wouldn’t kill you.

    That’s all im saying.

    P.S: I always have something to critizice, one of my greatest shortcomings…sometimes taken with a grain of salt…..sometimes it has got me BANNED from other places… (^_^) hehehe.

  • Richard Gozinya


    If you’re all that interested in the other riders, you can always try Google. The guy on the Harley who placed 5th for example was interesting, a rookie rider, first time at Pikes Peak, on a bike he had 3 days with come race day. Not a bad showing for a rookie on an XR1200, up against MTS’s, Streetfighters and an HP2.

  • Gutterslob

    I was basing my assumption based on the fact that an almost stock multistrada covered the entire course just 10 seconds slower than a highly tuned car. Not improbable that a supersport-spec 1000cc would make that up, considering the lenghth of the course.

    Obviously, the cars will get faster next year, having acquired data from this even and whatnot, but I still see them beating all the production-based cages. A highly tuned electric in a Radical SR3 “Le-Mans style” chassis might be a different kettle of fist, though.

    Speaking of Radicals, maybe we should see proper bike-engined Radicals or Westfields there in future. Those kits tend to rule the tight hillclimb events in England.

  • I’ve got about 100 photos to touch up on the flight home, that should help diversify the coverage.

  • RGR

    Gutterslob, I hear what you’re saying but I’ll bet you’ve never taken an MTS1200 out in the twisties. The bike might not have the hp of the top liter bikes but the handling is unreal. I doubt many could outrun me on my Multi; rider talent being somewhat similar. And my other two bikes are liter supersports btw. My only beef with the bike is the damn rider’s seat. I’m sure most other owners would disagree with me, but that is the most uncomfortable saddle I’ve ever sat in. Once I fix that, I’ll be very happy.

    The only thing I wonder about is how they fixed the clearance issue. I’m guessing they’re running custom rearsets on the racebikes although I haven’t searched out any pictures to verify. The stock MTS runs out of room pretty quickly in spirited riding and you hit the pegs (and your feet) pretty easily.

  • AK

    Well they have Busa in a Sidecar class

  • adam

    what happened with audi rs5 sport. it was told to compete with multistrada..

  • Gutterslob

    No, I haven’t run a MTS1200 on a course like Pikes Peak, or anything resempling Pikes Peak, for that matter. I’ll take your word for it, as I only have one bike (Speed Triple) which probably came with an equally uncomfortable stock seat (the angle/incline, not the padding, in my case) btw.

    As for the pegs; well, they allow aftermarket rearsets even in the most amateur level club-race events I’ve taken part in, so I’m pretty sure it’d be legal to change em for something like Pikes Peak. Pretty sure they’d allow some sort of custom mounting even if the stock mounts didn’t suffice, since ground-clearance relates to safety to a large extent.

  • MikeD


    Thank you Sir. Ur sure listen to your “audience”. LOL.

    @Richard G:

    (^_^) U saw that ? Sometimes even the Bitchy ones get attention…..ROTFLMAO.

  • RGR

    Hey Gutterslob, we have similar taste. I was the proud owner of an ’07 Speed Triple at one time. I had the optional gel seat on mine and it was SO much better than the stock saddle. I’d say the Multistrada handles better than the Speed Triple believe it or not (a bit more stable and you get even more leverage from the bar). Of course, I have the S version with the Ohlins suspension, etc. so it’s not exactly apples to apples. It also has more power. The Speed Triple is an awesome bike though, so I’m certainly not dogging it for anything. I had a blast on mine and really liked it a lot.

    One nice thing about Colorado is that roads like Pikes Peak are all over the place lol! Riding here is phenomenal.

  • BSA bike

    There aren’t any superbikes because the rules won’t allow it. While cars have an unlimited class that is only limited by safety gear, the fastest bike class is limited to three cylinders and must have come from the factory with a tube handlebar, not clipons. No Panigale, ZX-10r, S1000RR, etc. No superchargers or nos. No slick tires, must have street tires. These are pretty severe restrictions for a paved course that tops out at over 14,000feet.
    The only reason bikes got close to the cars this year is because snow closed the top of the course before the fastest cars got a chance to race. They ran a short course that was only 4-5 minutes long.
    Of course the fastest motorcycles were ridden by the spectators and parked on the shoulder while dirtbikes went up the closed paved course on treaded street tires.