The two-wheeled portion of the 2019 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb may have ended in tragedy with the death of, but Dunne’s death wasn’t the only story.
There’s also the story of Aprilia USA and motorcycle journalist Rennie Scaysbrook’s attempt on the heavyweight production bike record, and that story had a happy ending. In the end, Rennie was able to pilot his nearly showroom stock Aprilia Tuono 1100 Factory up America’s mountain in just 9 minutes, 44.963 seconds, making him the fastest man on two wheels in the event’s history. Just as a comparison, took 10 minutes 18.4 seconds.
It took a little while, but the folks from Aprilia along with Rennie’s publication, CycleNews, cut together a video of the run up the mountain and friends, it’s incredibly exciting — and pants-soilingly terrifying. If you’ve never been on Pikes Peak (first of all, you should; it’s a gorgeous public road) then it’s hard to convey just how tight the hairpins are and how steep the unguarded drop-offs are should you get one of those hairpins wrong.
Watching Rennie straighten out the road to the summit is exhilarating and impressive, even more so when you find out that he’s not a professional racer. He stated in a radio interview after the race that he usually manages just one or two club races in a year.
Racer or not, being able to muscle a bikeat the speeds he was going is a real achievement on its own, and it’s something absolutely worth watching.