Last year Volkswagen set the world of racing on its head with an all electric prototype ID.R setting a new world record at Pikes Peak. With that overall record out of the way, there were no big players at this year’s race aiming for an overall record. With the top spot pretty much a foregone conclusion as Robin Schute would be taking an open-top Honda-powered lightweight prototype up the hill, the BBi Autosport/Hoonigan effort would be running for fastest in Time Attack 1 class honors. The BBi team in Southern California built a 991 GT3 Cup car with a turbocharged GT3 4-liter pumped up to something like 900 horsepower. That should be enough to win that class, for sure, and it did. Raphael Astier, a French rally driver and Pikes Peak competitor, was called in to do the driving, and managed it quite well.
Astier managed to run up the mountain in 9 minutes 23 seconds, just a little less than a second faster than Acura’s Peter Cunningham, who won the Pikes Peak Open class. Just a few seconds behind Cunningham was Porsche of Colorado Springs entered David Donohue in the return of the turbocharged beast with a 9:33.404.
Astier’s onboard video has not been released yet, but in the post race interview he mentions in broken English when asked about his run, “It’s complicated for me. My engine no good.” Personally I can’t wait to see exactly what he means. The engine was built about a week before the test day, so it’s possible that something got messed up in the process. To see the full build on this car, check out the four-part series on Hoonigan’s YouTube Channel.
All of the competitors mentioned that the race course was much bumpier this year, and you can see much of that nastiness in David Donohue’s 911 Turbo run. It’s pretty gnarly, especially in the top sector just before the finish.
And finally, because it’s just how awesome he is, you need to watch Travis Pastrana’s run up the hill. Because he was running later in the day, Pastrana’s “Porsche Trophy” class Cayman GT4 Clubsport ran into quite a lot of rain, and he finished in 32nd with an 11:24.287 time. His lap involved serious levels of wheelspin, waving to the crowds mid-lap, and avoiding a herd of sheep at the top of the mountain. He’s just too cool.