Motorsport Bucket List: Organize a Hill Climb in SoCal

8 Jan

One of the goals I hope to cross off my list before I die, is to successfully organize a hill-climb event here in SoCal, on one of my favorite driving roads. After reading a recent story that discussed how the SCCA hosted a successful hill-climb event near the infamous “Tail of the Dragon” (http://www.dragonhillclimb.com/), I began to wonder if it was indeed possible for me to do such a thing here in SoCal.

Public roads are often used for sporting events throughout California (5Ks, 10Ks, marathons, triathlons, bike races, etc.). So why can’t a public road be closed temporarily to host a hill climb? Well, this is California. So anything that might not be “green”, or worse yet, emit pollution into our air, will more than likely be frowned upon.

I’m certain there is a cost involved, and an established and documented process for requesting use of a public road/highway for an event. If any of you readers know of the process, or have helped to host events that use public roads, please post a comment at the end of the blog.

The section of the road I wish to host my event on is a road I have driven dozens of times. It was my favorite “back way” up to Mtn. High ski resort. No cops, smooth pavement, fast sections,  slow sections, very little traffic and elevation change galore. Some of my friends have driven this road with me, and would know the road upon seeing a drawing of the course, likely having  fond memories such as myself.

Course highlights: 4.3-miles, 23-turns and nearly 1300ft of elevation change. The fastest formula-style cars would hit speeds over 150mph on the fast sections, with the slowest sections being 1st gear VERY slow hairpins with considerable elevation change. The start and finish areas of the course, fortunately, have plenty of private property we could use as staging areas and hospitality areas (with the owner’s permission of course). The city of Wrightwood is relatively close and could host pre-race events and award banquets.

It would be amazing to see some of the fastest Time Attack, TT, W2W and Auto-X cars make their way up the hill. I’d expect demand from participants would be overwhelming as there hasn’t been a properly-organized hill-climb, on a decent and safe course, for an untold number of years here in SoCal. I cannot remember one…  Can you?

Yes, the odds of hosting an event such as this are more than likely considerably long. But I can dream, and plan in my mind what i would do and how I would do it.

For now, I’ll simply look forward to the chance to bomb this road again when my Focus is up and running in a couple of months. Should be a good tune-up for hitting Streets of Willow! 🙂

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