The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is a grueling event to cover, and nothing is worse than walking off a plane, from more or less sea level, and heading to the highest part of the mountain for Practice 1.
Pikes Peak is unique. The organizers split the mountain into three sections — cars run two-thirds of the course , while bikes, ATVs and sidecars run the other third.
The bikes started at Devil’s Playground for our first practice, which puts us immediately at high altitude. It tests the bikes and our bodies to the limit. But thankfully, first practice is just about getting the bikes dialed in, and less about making fast times.
To finish first, first you have to finish. Reliability on this mountain will put cracks in even the most well laid out plans. Some riders were already pushing hard, and it was evident. Others were just getting the lay of the land.
Tomorrow we run the middle sector of the mountain. As a photographer, it is my personal favorite spot to shoot. But I’m not looking forward to another 2:15am alarm.
Photos: © 2014 Jamey Price / Jamey Price Photo – All Rights Reserved
27-year-old Jamey Price is an award winning motorsport photojournalist based in Charlotte, North Carolina. His work has been published around the globe by Road & Track, RACER magazine, Autosport, F1 Racing magazine, Motorsport Magazine, F1i magazine, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, SPEEDTV, Southern Living, QC Exclusive, the Washington Post, The Charlotte Observer, and now Asphalt & Rubber.
Jamey continues to do freelance work for some of the most respected sports imagery wire services, and for commercial clients including Ducati, Audi, Lamborghini, Mitsubishi, Red Bull and many others covering a diverse range of sporting assignments from Horse Racing to Formula One and everything in between. You can find more of his work on his website, as well as follow him on Twitter and Instagram.