- Dumas and Honda power back up 2014 victory with 2016 crown
- Team is second-ever to break the nine-minute barrier in event
- Honda/Acura score class victory for 15th consecutive year
Started as an after-hours project by a small team of Honda Performance Development engineers, an HPD-built Honda engine today propelled Romain Dumas to the summit of Pikes Peak ahead of a talented field to win the Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb for the second time in the last three years.
The Honda powerplant propelled Dumas to the top of the 14,115-foot mountain in a time of 8:51.445 (81.288 mph), marking just the second car ever to cover the 12.42-mile road course in less than nine minutes. Rhys Millen would later join Dumas in getting under nine minutes, but his time of 8:57.118 left him more than five seconds behind the leader.
“I pushed hard early in the race and didn’t make any mistakes, which put us in great position for the last part of the course,” Dumas reported. “We didn’t get to practice the upper part of the course so I was being quite careful on the last section.”
The victory for Dumas caps a week that started when the Frenchman won the 24 Hours of Le Mans, then crossed the Atlantic Ocean to compete in the Unlimited category in the 100th anniversary of the Pikes Peak Hill Climb. Honda has been a sponsor of the Pikes Peak Hill Climb in recent years and has seen many of its associates compete in the races in a myriad of Honda vehicles.
“It has been a dream to win both of these races, and now it has come true,” Dumas said. “A lot of people were pushing really hard to make this happen and this is what happens when you work hard. We all pushed and put in long hours and our car and our power were great.”
The victory marked the 15th consecutive year that Honda has earned a class win at Pikes Peak covering not only Honda Performance Development (HPD) engines, but also Honda auto and motorcycle products.
“Congratulations to Romain Dumas on breaking the nine-minute barrier and setting the fastest time of the 100th anniversary Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb,” said HPD Vice President and COO Steve Eriksen. “Today’s achievement added to our list of wins at “100th’s” following Honda’s win last month at the 100th Indy 500. The Honda engine that again powered Romain’s Norma chassis started several years ago as an after-hours project of one of our Honda Performance Development engineers, Aaron Hale. It is both a demonstration of the passion that Honda engineers have for racing as well as the outright performance of Honda engines in competition.”
Honda established operations in America in 1959 and now employs more than 39,000 associates in its North American sales, R&D and manufacturing operations, with total capital investment in North America exceeding $22 billion.
Based on its longstanding commitment to “build products close to the customer,” Honda operates 16 major manufacturing facilities in North America, producing a wide range of Honda and Acura automobiles; automobile engines and transmissions; Honda all-terrain vehicles; power equipment products, such as lawn mowers, mini-tillers and general purpose engines; and the HondaJet advanced light jet.
Eight Honda auto plants in the region, including four in the U.S., have the capacity to produce 1.92 million automobiles each year. In 2014, more than 97 percent of the Honda and Acura automobiles sold in the U.S. were produced in North America. Those plants today manufacture 11 different models, including four passenger cars and seven light trucks, using domestic and globally sourced parts. A fifth U.S. auto plant, the Performance Manufacturing Center, is under construction in Marysville, Ohio, and in 2015 will become the exclusive global production location for the next generation NSX supercar.
Honda also operates 16 major research and development centers in the U.S. with the capacity to fully design, develop and engineer many of the products Honda produces in North America.
About Honda Performance Development
HPD was founded in 1993 to spearhead Honda’s entry into Indy car racing. No other manufacturer has matched Honda’s success in Indy cars, which includes 213 race victories, 15 drivers’ championships, six manufacturers’ championships and 11 Indianapolis 500 victories, including the 2016 event, won by Alexander Rossi
HPD’s prototype racing efforts have resulted in more than 70 victories and multiple American Le Mans Series championships. The company’s sports-car racing debut in 2007 at the 12 Hours of Sebring marked the first win for HPD’s LM-V8 engine and the first for a Honda racing engine designed and developed outside of Japan.
HPD won the LMP2 title in the inaugural 2012 World Endurance Championship and has twice won the LMP2 category at the 24 Hours of Le Mans since 2010.
HPD offers a complete line of race engines for cars from grass roots to pinnacle; for professional, amateur and entry-level racers. For more information about HPD and the company’s racing product lines, please visithttp://hpd.honda.com.
About Team Honda Research
Founded in 1996 and based in Ohio and Los Angeles, THR has a record of success racing Honda and Acura products in Sports Car Club of America (SCCA), NASA, and Rally America competition, with more than 50 race victories in a variety of classes.