The 90th edition of Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (PPIHC) started on a high note. Team APEV with Monster Sport had three days of successful practice before race weekend, and reigning champion Nobuhiro “Monster” Tajima was full of confidence on race day. The team had made some small adjustments to the car during practice, and, as a result, Tajima produced faster and faster times. “Monster” qualified first in the electric class by a large margin, and it seemed possible that he could take the overall win once again.
On race day, the 2012 E-Runner Pikes Peak Special started first in the electric class. Things were going well until a fast section called “Horseshoe,” about 1.5 kilometers into the course. Tajima explains, “I saw smoke coming out from the motor, and I had no choice but to stop the car so it wouldn’t get any worse. I am very disappointed because my team and I have put a tremendous effort to get where we are today.” Although Tajima was saddened by the problem that put a halt to his race, his spirit persevered: “Thank you so much for your support. I will be back next year. Watch out for me!”