Behind the Wheel with Clint Vahsholtz

2020 King Of The Mountain Seeks To Build On Family Legacy At 2023 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb
As The Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, brought to you by Gran Turismo, prepares for a second century of racing on Pikes Peak – America’s Mountain, local legend Clint Vahsholtz seeks a new challenge. In a sweet deal with Colorado-based Chocolove chocolates, and its founder, Timothy Moley, Vahsholtz will return to the mountain in a mind-blowing 2018 KTM Reiter X Bow GT4 Evo.
Photo by Louis Yio
Vahsholtz was raised in the shadow of Pikes Peak in Woodland Park, Colorado and is well known in the Pikes Peak region for collecting more division wins on America’s Mountain than any competitor in the past 100 runnings, so far – 24.
A second-generation competitor, and father to third-generation champion, Codie, Clint Vahsholtz is steeped in the history of the Race to the Clouds.
“What makes the Vahsholtz family so special to the PPIHC and to this race is not only the number of wins they’ve achieved, but the way they’ve given back to the event,” shared Lisa Haight, PPIHC Historian. “They have been a part of the PPIHC family for decades, providing a back-up timing system for more than 35 years, fielding winning entries, and sharing their love of the mountain with generations of race fans.”
With this local hero behind the wheel in the Chocolove-backed KTM X Bow race fans are in for a treat. Vahsholtz has proven he can switch divisions and compete successfully. He last ran in the Race to the Clouds in 2020 in the Open Wheel division in his 2013 Ford Open where he was awarded King of the Mountain for fastest overall time.
Clint Vahsholtz claims family’s first King of the Mountain crown in 2020.
Photo by Louis Yio
On his way to an Open Wheel division record in 2020, Clint is clocked at 09:35.490.
Photo by Jason Zindroski
Timothy Moley, car owner, stated, “I see and respect the ability of Clint Vahsholtz. He is the real deal. My task is to engineer a car that will support him in a winning attempt.”
“With this KTM’s lighter weight and nimble nature, our goal is to find balance and test limits,” Vahsholtz added. “We’re hoping to be a fan favorite. As a tribute to my father, I’ll be running his iconic #81.”
Pictured: Leonard Vahsholtz, early 1990s on the all-gravel course.
Photo by Larry Buche
Clint first tackled Pikes Peak on a motorcycle in 1991 in the Open Pro division. His first win came in 1993 in the same division aboard a Wood Rotax where he set a division record. Three Vahsholtz family first place finishes were noted that year, one for Clint and two for Leonard when he captured his most unique win. Leonard clocked a Stock Car division win and record, caught a helicopter back down to the Start Line, then charged up the mountain again claiming his second win and record in the Super Stock Truck division. Three wins, three records in one day, unprecedented in PPIHC history. That wasn’t just a one-time occurrence either. Father and son claimed same-year division wins a remarkable nine times.
The senior Vahsholtz, a PPIHC Hall of Famer first found success on Pikes Peak in 1981 in the Stock Car division. Leonard’s winning formula led to 18 division wins throughout his racing career on Pikes Peak. Clint has topped that with his 24 to date, and son, Codie has already claimed four.
In 2014, Clint captured his 21st division win and set an Open Wheel division record in the process.
Photo by Rob Miskowitch
Following in his father’s footsteps, Clint triumphed in the Stock Car and Super Stock Car divisions from the late 1990s through the early 2010s.
Photo by Rob Miskowitch
Photo Credits: Larry Chen Photo, Jason Zindroski, Louis Yio, Larry Buche’, Rob Miskowitch
First staged in 1916, the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is the second oldest race in America. The invitation-only event, often referred to as The Race to the Clouds is held annually on the last Sunday of June on Pikes Peak – America’s Mountain, near Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA. The famous 12.42-mile (20 km) course consists of 156 turns, boasts an elevation gain of 4,725 feet (1,440 m), and reaches a finish line at 14,115 feet (4,302 m) above sea level. The PPIHC’s six race divisions feature a wide variety of vehicles – from production-based Time Attack challengers to purpose-built Open Wheel racers and state-of-the-art Unlimited vehicles. The current race record was set in 2018 by Romain Dumas and Volkswagen in the all-electric I.D. R Pikes Peak – 07:57.148.