Victory Racing Returns to Pikes Peak with Project 156 and Empulse RR

Victory Project 156 and Empulse RR at the PPIHC 2015 9 photos
Photo: Victory Motorcycles
Two Victory motorcycles will take the start in the 2016 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in June, as Victory Racing is back in action with another shot at Race to the Clouds glory.
Victory will field a gas-powered machine, the Project 156 prototype developed for last year's race, as well as an electric motorbike, the Empulse RR. Victory has high hopes for both machines, and is already testing the electric one. The 2016 edition of the PPIHC is an even more important event as it marks 100 years since the day the first race was organized back in 1916 by Spencer Penrose.

The Project 156 prototype (named after the 156 turns of the race) will have a big name at the helm. Victory secured the services of the 2014 Pikes Peak Heavyweight Champion Jeremy Toye, who will start the tests in mid-April.

The rider of the Empulse RR is Cycle World journalist Don Canet, the very rider that took the Project 156 to the start of the Pikes Peak last year. This year will mark the third Pikes Peak presence for Canet, and the first time he will be astride an electric motorcycle in the Race to the Clouds.

Last year, Canet was forced to retire after his motorbike stopped working a short distance before reaching the finish line. He also had a wipeout going up the Pikes Peak, but was able to continue his race until the engine died.

On the other hand, Toye went under the magic 10-minute mark in 2014 with a time of 9’58.687 aboard a Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R. The 10-minute barrier is, for motorcycles, the thin line that "separates the boys from the men," in a figurative way. The outright best time to the clouds belongs to Carlin Dunne, who rode a Ducati Multistrada across the finish line in 9’52.819.

However, the absolute best time up the Pikes Peak does not belong to a motorcycle. The fastest individual in the PPIHC remains WRC icon Sebastian Loeb and his 08:13.878 record that still stands since 2013.

The Race to the Clouds will take place Sunday, June 26. Below you can watch Don Canet's 2015 run aboard the Project 156 machine.

PS: We also know KTM will have one of their 1290 Super Duke R race beasts at the PPIHC 2015.

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