There will have been Italian celebrations in Colorado as a Ducati Multistrada wins the 2018 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. The victory came with rider Carlin Dunne who has previously won the event three times. That includes winning on a Ducati Multistrada 1200 S in 2012 and holding the all-time class record until 2017, which probably spurred them on this year.
The win in the Rocky Mountains is particularly helpful as Dunne was riding a Ducati Multistrada 1260 Pikes Peak limited edition. So coming second wouldn’t have really helped shift models with the special Pikes Peak livery, and lashings of carbon fibre.
Fortunately a win was always on the cards. Not only was Dunne the first rider to ever complete the 4,720 foot Pikes Peak course in under 10 minutes back in 2012, but Ducati has now taken 7 wins since first entering the event in 2008. And the Dunne/Ducati partnership again resulted in a time of under 10 minutes, with a victorious 9:59.102.
“We did it. We took the podium,” said Dunne. “The Multistrada 1260 Pikes Peak proved as amazing as we all hoped. It performed flawlessly, giving me everything I needed to get up the mountain. Pikes Peak is never an easy race, but the weather cooperated and we clinched the victory for Ducati.”
The Spider Grips Ducati Pikes peak team also included Codie Vahsholtz, who finished third in the heavyweight class with a time of 10:12:703.
The 2018 event was the 96th running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, also known as the ‘Race to the Clouds’. The first race was in 1916 with the winning car taking 20:55.60. The car lap record stands at 7:57.148 with Romain Dumas in a specialist Volkswagen creation, rather than a more production based motorcycle. The production-based four-wheeled classes are closer to the motorcycle records.
The Ducati Multistrada 1260 Pikes Peak
The marketing and product teams at Ducati must have breathed a sigh of relief when Dunne crossed the line. The 2018 Ducati Multistrada 1260 Pikes Peak edition was announced at the end of 2017. Which was slightly ironic, as it was the first year without an official factory entry since 2008.
Inspired by the event, the Pikes Peak is powered by the 1262cc Euro 4 compliant Ducati Testastretta DVT engine. And gets a new front end geometry and longer swingarm to improve race performance. There’s the special livery and colour scheme, with new forged aluminium wheels, and a low racing-type carbon fibre screen. Plus a carbon front mudguard, hands free cover and front side panels. Plus you get a red-stitched seat.
The new forged aluminium wheels are even lighter than those on the 1260 S model. And you get adjustable Ohlins forks at the front, plus an Ohlins TTX36 shock at the rear. To help with the 18% increase in torque over the previous Multistrada engine, you get Ride by Wire, Ducati Quick Shift, a Bosh Inertial Measurement Unit, Covering ABS, Cornering Lights, Ducati Wheel Control, Ducati Traction Control, Vehicle Hold Control and Cruise Control.
You’d imagine the Hold Control came in handy when starting the bike somewhere on the Pikes Peak course. Probably less useful are the accessories including Bluetooth and a Ducati Multimedia System, or the Touring and Urban accessory packs. But there is a racier EU type-approved Ducati Performance exhaust by Termignoni.
If you want something similar to the bike Carlin Dunne rode to victory in 2018, then you’ll need to spend £20,795 on the limited edition 2018 Ducati Multistrada 1260 Pikes Peak edition. With is around £2000 more than the standard and S models in the range. But at least you’ll know it’ll get you up the nearest hills nice and fast.