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Racing driver Walter Rohrl, Group B monster Audi Sport quattro S1, and the treacherous Pikes Peak Hill Climb are iconic in and of themselves, but when combined, it marks a legendary moment in the history of motorsports.
25 years ago, when the 4,301 meter hill climb was pure gravel, Rohrl threw his Audi around 156 cliff-side corners, four-wheel drifting his way to the summit to set a record breaking time of 10 minutes, 47.85 seconds.
Since then, Rohrl has been dethroned by the likes of Nobuhiro “Monster” Tajima and the Unlimited class Suzuki SX4 Hill Climb Special, climbing the modern Pikes Peak in 9 minutes 51.278 seconds. However, the hill climb course itself is now completely paved with tarmac and while that provides better grip for the cars to climb faster, this dampens the sheer danger and spectacle of its gravel past.
This year, Walter Rohrl and his record-setting Audi Sport quattro S1 will return to Pikes Peak for an exhibition drive. Although Rohrl will not be competing on the main event, race fans will certainly be excited to see their childhood heroes back together again.
Check out footage of Walter Rohrl’s 1987 Climb in his Audi Sport quattro S1 after the jump: Continue Reading…
Back in the 1980′s the FIA World Rally Championship had the infamous Group B class, which featured some of the fastest cars to ever enter professional rallying.
Rallying rules at the time dictated that at least 200 road-going examples had to be made, and hence the era saw many wild, road-legal versions of cars like the Lancia 037 and the Renault 5 GT Turbo.
Ford was heavily involved in the world of rally racing, and made a car specifically to take the Group B crown. It was called the RS200, and it featured a mid-mounted, 1.8-liter four-cylinder motor with a Garrett T03/04 turbo charger bolted on it. Factory claims for the power output suggested 444-hp, but that could be easily tweaked to produce upwards of 650-hp.
However, just as Ford had prepared all the necessary road cars to meet homologation rules, the Group B class of rallying was canceled due to some terrible accidents. Group B was deemed too dangerous and such giants have never been seen in professional rallying ever since.
The road cars that resulted from this era are still highly sought after and exchange hands for large sums of cash. One such example of the RS200 is now on sale in Japan. This particular car has covered just 3666-miles since 1986, and is currently listed at $179,900. The seller points out that importing it to the United States is “very complicated,” but since a few of these do exist in American garages, we bet there are ways of having one registered.
[Source: Car Classic]