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Rig racer climbs to new heights with ninth win

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- Big rig racer Mike Ryan was in record-breaking form at the 84th Annual Pikes Peak Intern...


Mike Ryan's Freightliner was designed specifically for racing uphill
Mike Ryan's Freightliner was designed specifically for racing uphill

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Big rig racer Mike Ryan was in record-breaking form at the 84th Annual Pikes Peak International Hill Climb on July 1, eclipsing his own record of 12.46.81.

Seated behind the wheel of his hand built Freightliner Century Class S/T Super Truck, Ryan posted a new record time of 12.43.66 in the Big Rig Class, during his ninth win at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.

Also known as The Race To The Clouds, the annual race to the 14,110-foot summit of Pikes Peak debuted in 1916 and is the second oldest motorsports event in the US after the Indianapolis 500.

The 12.46-mile course winds through 156 turns on mostly dirt and gravel terrain with no guardrails. The race features a number of automotive and motorcycle classes and averages about 150 competitors.

Ryan’s unique Freightliner truck was designed specifically for the hill climb. It’s equipped with a 1250 horsepower Mercedes-Benz engine and has 2700 foot-pounds of torque. The transmission is a ZF 5 speed that has been modified for racing. Suspension is a 4-link front end and three-link rear end; and with a weight of 8,000 pounds, speeds have been reached of more than 100 mph.


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