Travis Pastrana Breaks Mount Washington Hillclimb Record, as the Track Comes to iRacing

One of the world’s oldest remaining motorsport events, the Mount Washington Hillclimb, has a new digital lease of life, taking its place as the first point-to-point course in iRacing — at the same time as Travis Pastrana was breaking his own record at the event.

It’s perhaps not the most famous hillclimb in US motorsports, but it is the oldest. First officially run in 1904, the “Climb to the Clouds” event pre-dates Indianapolis and its Colorado sibling at Pikes Peak by seven and 12 years respectively. In fact it’s older than Le Mans, the Targa Florio, and even the Brooklands circuit in the UK.

Mount Washington itself is, at 6,288ft, is the tallest peak in the Appalachians, in the north-east USA. The public road runs up to its summit and the Mount Washington Observatory, which once recorded a world-record wind speed of 231mph. It’s 7.6 miles in length and runs an average gradient of 11.6%.

The course became available in iRacing a few days ago, as an early access track. Players who pick up the Mount Washington Auto Road location, priced at $14.95, will be able to run it as both a hillclimb event and a considerably scarier descent.

It’s the first time a point-to-point track has been in iRacing, and it’s posed a number of challenges. According to Greg Hill, senior vice-president at iRacing, the dense vegetation and preponderance of rocks created some issues for the usual track-building process. The developer has implemented a number of solutions — such as the SpeedTree 3D vegetation modeling system — which will assist in track creation on other circuits in the future.

As the current course record-holder, iRacing enlisted the help of multi-disciplinary driver and stunt performer Travis Pastrana before he headed to New Hampshire for this year’s race. It clearly helped, as Pastrana demolished his own record with a 5:28.67 ascent time — some 16 seconds better than his previous time.

Pastrana was once again driving the Subaru WRX STI for his attempt, and in fact Subaru has now set the last four outright records, starting with David Higgins’ 6:11.54 in 2011. That’s considerably better than the first record, set in 1904, at 24:37.6! You can see just how it’s supposed to be done below:

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Comments (3)

  1. WedgeX2021

    I have it…its fun, its really hard, takes 5-7 mins to the top, although sofar I usually crash.. Frame rate isnt the best tho. I would rather see real rally stages but this is a start.

  2. Biobob

    All just seems like a marketing ploy to me.
    Course looked pretty boring IMHO (quit bored at 1:30)
    Maybe I’m wrong, but not in the least interesting to me
    :)

  3. Jtheripper

    Looks good and a fun challenge, wish we get more courses like this in games like dr and wrc, or any good sim style console game.
    Also be fun if could run downhill the pikes peak in dr1. And with any cars in the game.

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