Organizers of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb are working overtime to make sure your safety is job one for them. The date of the Hill Climb was moved from July 8th to August 12th because of fire fears related to the Waldo Canyon fire.
The Waldo Canyon fire is 100 percent contained and there have been recent rains over Pikes Peak which is the home of the race to the clouds. The Chairman of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, Tom Osborne tells me the recent moisture is only a quarter of why it will be safe for you to watch racing on the Peak this year. He says, "Our safety team is one of the best in the country. We would put them up against the Indy 500."
Osborne also says there will be 100 fire extinguishers on the course, eight fire trucks and a fan evacuation plan that's in place, just in case it's needed.
Osborne is excited about the race for several reasons. This is a history making year for the event. The Pikes Peak highway where racers will sprint up the hill is 100 percent paved. Osborne says, "With the paving, these cars are two inches off the ground and we're getting manufacturers like Scion, Toyota and others who are excited to come to the race to showcase their cars."
211 teams have signed up to be at the August 12th event. There were only seven teams that couldn't make it because of scheduling conflicts. Current record holder and fan favorite, Monster Tajima is going to be at this year's Hill Climb. Osborne said Monster told him, "What every day you'll have it, I'll be here."
There is still one question mark about the Hill Climb. It's an X-factor about next year's date of the race and for years to come. Dillon Motel owner George James and others want the Hill Climb board to consider having a date set in stone for Hill Climbs of the future. James says, "Ideally the end of June would be the ideal time to have the Pikes Peak Hill Climb. People can plan around it and other events can also be planned around it." James believes July and August is packed with tourists and family and special events aren't needed for this time period.
Hill Climb organizers are taking that suggestion to heart. They will be taking about next year's race and beyond. A possible decision could be 60 days after this August 12th race date. I'll keep you posted.