Ford Wins Pikes Peak Despite Stopping on the Course


It turns out the Ford Performance F-150 Lightning SuperTruck was so bloody quick at Pikes Peak that it won the 102nd running of the hill climb despite coming to a dead stop along the route.

That’s the equivalent of being so far ahead in a race that you’ve enough time to pull into the pits and wash the car in preparation for victory lane (legend says that happened ages ago at the 24 Hours of Daytona, by the way).

Romain Dumas, whose name does not rhyme with an insult, stands as current king of the hill with a 7m57.148s under his Nomex belt from 2018 when he slingshotted up the hill in a Volkswagen I.D. R race car. This year’s effort with Ford netted a 8m53.553s though Dumas estimates a technical glitch which forced a shutdown and restart of the truck cost him about 26 seconds.

“I don’t know what happened at the start, just the car switched off completely on its own, it never happened before,” he told Pikes Peak’s YouTube channel. Dumas went on to say the problem never happened in the two years of development and he knew how to potentially fix the problem thanks the lucky reading of a tech manual just hours prior to the race.

“By chance, I was reading all the procedures and I arrived to restart the car; so at this time I was quite happy that last night I was reading again what I should do in case of [an] issue!” There’s an endorsement for RTFM if we ever heard one.

Elsewhere, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 N TA Spec, driven by Hyundai World Rally driver Dani Sordo, finished the race in 9m30.852s which was a time sufficient to win the exhibition class. A second TA Spec car driven by hotshoe and all around good guy Randy Pobst finished the race in a speedy 9m55.551s. Not unlike the Nürburgring, anything under the ten minute mark is considered a blazingly quick run. Fun fact: Hyundai first competed in at Pikes Peak in 1992 when Rod Millen won the 2-Wheel Drive Showroom Stock division with a time of 13m21.17s behind the wheel of a Hyundai Scoupe.

The track was vastly different back in those days, with plenty of dirt presenting a wholly different challenge. Paving began early in the 2000s and the entire hill climb was licked with tarmac by the 2011 calendar year. This was undertaken thanks to a lawsuit against the City of Colorado Springs and National Forest Service brought by the Sierra Club alleging gravel pollution caused by the 13 unpaved miles of the Pikes Peak Highway violated the Clean Water Act.

[Images: Ford, Hyundai]

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