The 92nd running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb took place this last weekend as thousands of spectators came to watch some of the worlds’ most daring drivers take on the famed Race to the Clouds. With a number of motorcycle and car classes, the make, model and engine options on the mountain were endless, but we, of course, were most interested in the Chevys. Check out some of the amazing Bowtie-backed performance machines from the 2014 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (PPIHC) below!
You know that a race is going to be particularly good for the domestic manufacturers when it starts off with a high-performance ’65 Chevy C-10 pickup built by Gas Monkey Garage like this year’s hill climb did.
Driven by Richard Rawlings, this bad-ass bowtie was built by Rawlings and the other guys of the Gas Monkey Garage. It features the very 572ci fuel-injected big block engine out of Rawlings’ own ’52 Fleetline, which is matted to a 6-speed transmission, as well as Ridetech coilovers, Forgeline ZX3P wheels with a Flush-Loc center lock conversion kit, Currie rearend and Wilwood discs. Now if that doesn’t set the standard for a race like the PPIHC, we don’t know what does.
The first competitive Chevy to reach the summit of Pikes Peak on Sunday, June 29th was Steve Goeglein’s 2002 Camaro, running in the Unlimited Division. Raced under the #27 banner, this Camaro is not your typical high-dollar Pikes Peak Unlimited car with a yearly budget of just $20,000. Because of this, Goeglein has used the fourth-generation F-body for many years, tweaking and adjusting things on it every year. Goeglein is a home-grown Coloradoan and the longest-running active driver at the PPIHC, competing in every event since 1991.
Just last year, Goeglein moved into the Unlimited Division (a class where pretty much anything goes as long as safety requirements are met) with his Camaro, which has proved to be a smart move as Goeglein finished third in the class this year with a lap time of 10:30.704.
Following Goeglein up the hill was fellow Pikes Peak Hill Climb alum Layne Schranz in his 1999 Monte Carlo-bodied, Geico-sponsored race machine, competing in the Pikes Peak Open class. Originally a Stock Car class driver, Schranz had to switch things up in 2013 when the Stock class was eliminated. In order to run in the PPC-Pikes Peak Open class, he had to have a production-like body on his car, which made the Monte Carlo design choice an easy one for 2014.
Last year, Schranz took second place in the Pikes Peak Open class in his souped up Chevy, beat only by his dad Randy Schranz. The Chevy features a custom tube chassis and a 750hp V8 under the hood.
This was Schranz 21st year racing in the PPIHC and his dad’s 40th and last time on the course. Layne finished second in the PPC-Pikes Peak Open class with a lap time of 10:22.612, with his father coming in fourth (driving a Shelby Cobra) with a lap time of 10:35.225.
Long after the father-son team crossed the finish line at the summit, the fourth and final Chevy to reach the summit took on the famed 156-turn course.
Driven by Jerad Voight, the 2010 Camaro SS roared up the hill like the pissed off V8-wielding Chevy it is, competing in the Time Attack 2 class, which means only minor modifications can be made to the production cars that run in this division. Back in 2010 and 2011, Dark Horse Customs modified Voight’s Camaro for him and he’s been competing in hill climbs all over the country since, including the 2011 and 2012 PPIHC.
This year he reached the summit with a lap time of 12:04.504 for a fifth-place finish in his division. Though the car is capable of running faster lap times, Voight basically had to limp the car across the finish line this year with the engine fully ceasing at the top of the course.
Other notable “Chevys” that kicked off their race at the 92nd PPIHC but did not make it through all of the course sections include Paul Dallenbach’s SB Chevy-powered 2008 PVA 3 Open Wheel car and former Danny George’s Formula DRIFT LS3-powered 2002 Mazda Miata, racing in the Pikes Peak Open class. Both of the cars made it through the first section of the course, with race-favorite Dallenbach making it through the second section as well, but both experienced mechanical issues, which prevented them from reaching the summit of Pikes Peak.
Truly a joy to see on and off the race course, these high-performance Chevys certainly proved their worthiness on the longest and most dangerous hill climbs in the world; one where no-expense-spared builds and vehicles from foreign lands usually dominate!
For more photos of the high-performance Chevys of the 2014 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, be sure to check out the Chevy Hardcore Gallery below!