It is no secret that Toshiki Yoshioka was quick when the green flag dropped on June 26th 2011. After watching these videos however, one may forget that 2011 was Toshiki’s first run up the granite organism that is Pikes Peak.
Toshiki said he had always wanted to race the mountain, and that no doubt, is the truth. This man did not race the mountain though, he attacked it. During practice runs leading up to race day, Toshiki was consistently in the top 3 cars in Time Attack two-wheel drive. He posted times close to Rod Millen and Jeff Zwart during practice and on race day. Keep in mind these cars were both factory backed and their drivers are legends on the Mountain. Something about the way Toshiki drove the car was awe inspiring. Maybe it was just the sound of the SR20det echoing through the trees, but I beg to differ.
For 2012 Toshiki plans to run the same Nissan Silvia S15, but with a better turbo and a few other tweaks to the car. With one race under his belt and an all around better car, Toshiki should fare pretty well, come July 8th. In the meantime, watch these in-car videos and make your own opinion. The 2012 Pikes Peak Hill Climb is less than 100 days away, and will be 100% tarmac (with gravel, hay, rubber, and pine needles included). It will indeed be a year to remember.