Colorado Springs, CO – The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb has been postponed due to the nearby Waldo Canyon Fire. Highway 24 (serving the Pikes Peak Toll Road) has been closed but luckily the fire has not moved south of the highway onto Pikes Peak itself.
The fire has consumed 18,500 acres and moved into Colorado Springs causing evacuation of 32,000 residents and burning hundreds of homes. “I think we are past the worst of it,” said 2012 entrant Brad Lovell, “I am sure it is hard for the racers to accept and the postponement disappoints me. As a member of the community though, I support the decision. We have had a full blown disaster here and are still working to get it in control.”
“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,” said Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach. “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.”
Lovell adds, “While we have not been evacuated, we have watched the fire from the race shop and have been inundated with smoke. Today looks a lot better but officials are not expecting the fire to be out until the latter part of July.” There has been no date announced for the 2012 race but is expected to occur during the summer.
Until there is more news of Pikes Peak, the Lovell crew will focus on their pursuit to the 2012 TORC Pro-Light Championship with the next race at Route 66 Raceway near Chicago, IL July 19th & 20th. The event will be aired live on the SPEED Channel on the evening of Friday, July 20th.