TopGear.com28 June 2012

Pikes Peak Hillclimb postponed

Wildfires in Colorado mean legendary event is off - new dates announced in two weeks

Pikes Peak Hillclimb postponed

The 90th Pikes International Hill Climb has been called off after a wildfire in nearby Waldo Canyon, Colorado.

The event, which was scheduled to take place on July 8, was called off after the fire consumed more than 3,600 acres around Colorado Springs, which is Pikes Peak's nearest town.

The road leading from Colorado Springs to Pikes Peak, Highway 24, is currently closed and will remain so for the foreseeable future.

Pikes Peak International Hill Climb President & CEO, Tom Osborne, says:

"We have been informed by the U.S. Forest Service that conditions are so extreme, along with the inability to forecast the future of the fire, and with access to Pikes Peak in jeopardy, that the agency can't permit the event to go as scheduled."

Colorado Springs Mayor, Steve Bach, added: "This race began in 1916 and it has earned its place among the world's greatest motor sports events, and it is an important part of the sports heritage of Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak Region.

"We are committed to making sure it takes place this year and that we carry on the tradition. We are disappointed, but our first concern is our city, its residents, their homes, businesses and public safety."

32,000 people have already been evacuated from their homes as winds reach up to 65 mph. 450 firefighters, three heavy air tankers, four Single Engine Air Tankers (SEAT), one lead plane and two helicopters are on site tackling the blaze.

Race organisers are currently discussing a new date, which will be announced in two weeks (and we're planning to send a TopGear.com delegation to cover the event when it returns).

 

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