Millen sets new mark
Rhys Millen had his sights set high not on just reaching the top of Pikes Peak, but also breaking a new record.
After taking down the SUV Production record last year, Millen wanted a new, but similar challenge. Driving a 2019 Bentley Continental GT worth $215,000, Millen was looking to break the production record at the 97th running of The Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. Millen easily beat the previous record — 10:26.896 — by eight seconds with a time of 10:18.488.
The 46 year old’s feat was one of the biggest highlights of the day.
“To come here and set a time a second of what we predicted after testing in California, the credit goes all to the vehicle,” Millen said. “Today was a little bit of survival mode. You had to use the experience of running here in the past to balance the conditions and to perform well.”
Here are some of the other highlights from Sunday’s race:
Glöckner wins Exhibition Powersport
Switching over just a few days before the race from the Heavyweight division to Exhibition Powersport, motorcyclist Lucy Glöckner was aiming to break her personal record from a year ago.
She absolutely demolished it.
From a 10:21.932 in 2018 to a 9:58.878 mark this year, Glöckner remained smart, speedy and resilient throughout the race to the summit in her 2019 BMW S1000R. She was the only female to race in the event.
“It was my goal to get under 10,” Glöckner said. “We had some problems in the first part of the track, but I got faster as the race went on.”
Fillmore breaks record, but what’s next?
For about 10 minutes, motorcyclist Chris Fillmore was a triple record holder after a superb 10:20.819 time in the Lightweight division in his 2019 KTM 450 SX-F Factory Edition bike.
Fillmore possessed the Heavyweight (2017), Middleweight (2018) and Lightweight (2019) records until Rennie Scaysbrook stole the Heavyweight title away shortly after Fillmore’s run.
“I didn’t come here to defend my lap course record,” Fillmore said. “I came here to try to break a new one, and I did that. It’s three consecutive records at Pikes Peak, and I think I’m the first person to do that.”
Looking ahead, Fillmore has already expressed interest in returning for the 2020 Hill Climb. However, he plans to gauge interest from KTM Factory Racing regarding the opportunity for him to drive a car.
Portillo shows age is just a number
The youngest racer in the field was 19-year-old Tyler Portillo, a Colorado Springs native and recent Coronado High School graduate. Even though his 11:52.913 time came up short of the 11:05.664 quad record set in 2017, Portillo said he learned what the mountain is all about and hopes to snap the top time next year.
“I felt good, but I could’ve done better in some spots,” he said. “I either came in too hot or too slow, but for an overall first year, I felt good.”
EVAN PETZOLD, George Stoia The Gazette