Alpine ascent: French brand to take on Pikes Peak

Alpine A110 Pikes Peak

France will attempt to conquer ‘America’s mountain.’

Alpine is entering the 2023 Pikes Peak in a wildly enhanced A110. Partnering with French racing team, Signatech, the specially designed French coupe has been given more power, less weight and a wild-looking aerodynamic package.

The A110 Pikes Peak special features a bespoke front splitter, massive rear wing, specially designed side skirts and a rear diffuser to generate more downforce and help the car stick to the ground as it climbs the 19km to the summit. An air-intake on the roof helps ram more oxygen into the engine to boost power to more than 370kW (500hp).

The car will be driven by 2022 FIA R-GT Cup champion, Raphaël Astier, who drove an A110 Rally to the title so he knows his way around the car. He’ll be competing in the Time Attack 1 category for modified production cars.

Raphaël Linari, Alpine chief designer, said the A110R was developed to push the limits of the car’s design in order to claim one of the most illustrious prizes in American motorsports.

“The A110 Pikes Peak brings out the wildest side of this iconic car,” Linari said. “It is agile and light by design, but with its specific aerodynamics and extreme proportions, it has become a genuine racing beast. This legendary event was an endless source of inspiration to push our creativity and enhance the A110 while integrating the constraints associated with performance. This project was completed in a decidedly short timeframe, thanks to the close collaboration with Signatech’s technical teams. We look forward to seeing our creation challenge the American powerhouses on their home turf.”

Block name returns to Pikes Peak

Lia Block’s will drive the ‘Hoonipigasus’ Porsche 911 designed for her late father

The late Ken Block tried to take on Pikes Peak in a one-of-a-kind Porsche 911 ‘Hoonigigasus’ in 2022 but was forced out by a pre-event engine failure. For 2023 his daughter, Lia, will get behind the wheel of the 1000kW turbocharged hillclimb special to pay tribute to her dad in an untimed run.

The 16-year-old won’t be driving flat-out this year, but the rising rally star did hint that she may try her hand at winning Pikes Peak in the future.

Instead her competitive focus is on the American Rally Association, where she’s driving a Subaru BRZ with Australian co-driver, Rhianon Gelsomino.

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