The highly anticipated 93rd Pikes Peak International begins its race week. After the Registration and Technical inspection on the 22nd, on the 23rd the actual driving on the course begins. Although participation in the practice run is optional, the team places high value to the rare opportunity of running the course.
Today the Electric Division was allocated the ‘Top Section’ of the mountain. This is the part from ‘Devils Playground’ at altitude 3,800 m to the ‘Finish Line’ at 4,300 m. The mountain saw snow fall right before the race week with much snow remaining on the face of the mountain; a sight unseen in recent years. Paddock and race course were restored to usable condition, looks to be without any problem for the race.On the other hand a problem emerges in relation to the course’s condition. Over the past seasons the road surface became alarmingly uneven and one could see the waves in continuous sections.
The worse sections would throw racing cars off the course. Two drivers went off the course already. As the top section is overall a high speed section, even the subtle waves and gaps affect the race machine requiring further precision in driving.One might think that since the Pikes Peak Hill Climb is now a fully paved course, race machines would be tuned closely to race tracks. However this is not the case. Pikes Peak still retains its unique property as a race using public road, requiring machine and driver to adapt to varying environmental conditions.
This is one of the reasons why TEAM APEV with MONSTER SPORT continues to participate in this particular race, to refine the technology to adapt.”MONSTER” Tajima piloting “Tajima Rimac E-Runner Concept_One”, focused all senses to read the changes of the road condition during practice. This is to draw the optimal racing line and simultaneously verify the direction to take the calibration and tuning of the EV race car together with Monster Sport and Rimac Racing engineers.
“Today we have conducted tests using the opportunity of Sanctioned Practice Day.”“MONSTER” Tajima
As a result we have been able to collect much data and would like to prepare our setup to try out Practice 1 tomorrow. The road condition is very bad this year, especially at the latter half of the top section. It is more bumpy than before, throwing the car in all directions, making it a tough condition to race. Already, cars have gone off course so we need to take caution to review suspension strokes and ensure we have the best tuning.
Now I am going to descend the mountain and do tests in preparation for tomorrow”. Tomorrow for Practice/qualifying Day 1, Electric Division will run through the rich wilderness of trees in contrast to today’s section. As the practice runs would act as qualifying time, achieving a good time would be important, however looking at the race in total, tomorrow would be a full day to find the best tuning adaptable to the entire Pikes Peak race course.
Rimac Automobili Official web site
TEAM APEV Official web site