The Leavitt Machinery Knox Mountain Hillclimb is run annually on Knox Mountain Park Road, in the City of Kelowna. The road, while paved, is narrow with off-camber corners, and steep grades; a nice Sunday drive, but hardly a race track. It is 2.2 miles (3.5km) long, and climbs approximately 800 feet (245 meters) in elevation for an average grade of 6.7%.
Past its 60th year, Knox Mountain is the longest annually running paved hillclimb in North America. The event attracts top drivers from throughout the Pacific Northwest, looking for the challenge and thrill of being fastest.
Cars are run one at a time, each trying to reach the top in the lowest elapsed time. Drivers/cars compete in various classes from open wheeled formula cars to powerful large engined GT cars. But, each hopes to be “King of the Hill”, earning the fastest time of the weekend.
The current hill record is 1m:37.065, held by John Haftner of Vancouver, British Columbia. Times under two minutes are considered exceptionally fast, with few drivers achieving that and even fewer sedans having ever achieved that. Most times fall between 2m00s and 2m30s. To achieve top times, speeds in excess of 160kpH must be reached on the short straights.
The road corners are known by their “numbers” and include three switchbacks; each corner has its own features varying from steepness to camber, to steep drop-offs if you go too wide.
Turn 1 – The first switchback, comes in off a rise in the slope, often misjudged carrying in a bit much speed.
Turn 2 – The steepest part of the hill, but narrow and dark due to shade from the trees.
Turn 3 – Second switchback, again very steep especially if your line is too close to the traditional apex. Secret is to go wide.
Turn 4 – For many the scariest turn, with a steep dropoff on the right. Be bold.
Turn 5 – Frequently mis-judged as drivers turn away from open slopes to the inside part of the course. Be cautious of drifting too wide.
Turn 6 – High speed turn, flat out for many, unless your car is very quick.
Turn 7 – Another high speed turn, leads into hard left switchback.
Turn 8 – Hard braking into left hand switchback, drop a couple of gears and prepare for another short but steep climb.
Turn 9 – Lift off a bit and quickly back on for a blast to the finish. Don’t drift too wide, another big dropoff.
Finish – Heart pounding? Adrenalin shakes? Good, get ready for another run.
Dates: May 18th and 19th, 2019.
Time: Gates are open at 9AM and are located along Broadway.
Fees: $20/day or $30/wknd at the gate. (Children under 15 are free, when accompanied by parent.)
Rules and Comments
- No dogs allowed.
- You will be asked to sign a waiver and wear a wrist band.
- There is only street parking so come early.
- Do not wear anything red.
- Do not carry a red back pack or purse.
- Cross the road only at the first designated crossing. Otherwise stay on the trails.
- Do not stand on the outside of any corner and please keep well back from the road surface. Cars run about 50 seconds apart but may not be evenly spaced where you are in the track. For example a
- faster car will gain ground on a slower car.
- Observe all fencing and caution tape.
- Listen to instructions from corner workers and race officials.
- Depending on weather, bring appropriate clothing, sun screen water etc.
- You will probably choose to walk up the mountain so wear good walking shoes.
- There will be food vendors, beer garden, toilets, children’s activities, car show and information booths, in addition to the car racing.
2019 Registered Drivers
Name New Car # Class Make Model Colour
Rehlinger, Anthony 52 CAM-C Mustang Cobra-R Black
Neveaux, David 1 FL Legend Chev Sedan Black/silver
Coughlin, Tim 7 FL Legend Chev Sedan Black/silver
Cook, Aran 26 FL Arco X10 Black
Thorkelson, Cam 38 FL Caterham Super 7 Green
Shaw, Graeme 71 FL Dwarf Ford Green
Sieber, Roger 83 FL Hayaboostacar Ubuilt Black
Janson, Ryan 68 GT1 Chevrolet Camaro Green/white
Ball, Mike 113 GT2 Datsun 240z Red,white,blue
Ceravolo, Debra Y 280 GT2 BMW 330ci Silver
Lohues, Gary 86 GT3 Toyota Corolla Red
Jamieson, Bruce 713 GT3 Datsun 240z Red,white,blue
Delpero, Fred 80 GTL Alfa Romeo Boogta Red/white/green
Denham, Stefan Y 8 GTM Subaru Impreza Blue
Ocker, Jennifer Y 72 GTM Subaru WRX Sti Black
Jones, Ryan 93 GTM Honda S2000 Red
Mealing, Garrett 197 GTM Eagle Talon Wide Body MkII White/black
Callaghan, Bill 341 GTM Mazda RX7 White
Cooper, Ted Y 21 GTO Datsun 280ZX White/blue
Bouman, Wouter 22 GTO Mazda RX7 Silver
Browning, Brian 23 GTO MGB GT-v8 Red
Freeman, Bill 43 GTO Mazda RX7 White
Ussyk, Cory 48 GTO Mazda RX7 White
Boyer, Bob 77 GTO Datsun 510 Red
Singh, Kash Y 78 GTO Ford Mustang White
Marziali, Andre 96 GTO BMW M3 Black
Reid, Allen 123 GTO MGB GT-V8 Red
Sherman, Bob 5 GTU MG BGT Green
Sherman, Marie 54 GTU MG BGT Green
Sandham, Larry 31 GTX Vauxhall Mini Green/blue
Diesing, Daniel Y 186 GTX Nissan Skyline White
Jacyna, Richard 34 SP1 Mazda Miata White/blue
Whitelaw, Jim 121 SP1 Honda Civic Red
Staples, Ken 19 SP2 Dodge Neon White
Edwards, John 27 SP2 Ford Focus SVT Grey/green
Gunner, Nick 94 SP2 Porsche 944 Red
Law, Brad 177 SP2 Honda S2000 Silver
McColl, Alan Y 771 SP2 Honda S2000 Silver
Pischke, Cyrus 934 SP2 Hyundai Tiburon White
Gunner, Steve 944 SP2 Porsche 944 Red
Davidson, Greg 6 SP3 VW GTI Red
Davidson, Brad 9 SP3 VW GTI Red
Morgan, Douglas Y 14 SP3 Porsche Boxster 986 Silver
Reimer, Robert 17 SP3 Mazda Miata Blue
Brasseur, Mike 82 SP3 Mitsubishe Lancer Evo Red
Sinfield, Matt Y 111 SP3 Mazda Miata Red
Coles, Mick 145 SP3 BMW 328is Black
Roberts, Carter 166 SP3 Mazda RX-8 Grey
Roberts, Chuck 168 SP3 Mazda RX-8 Grey
Wright, Jon 45 SP4 Ford Mustang Grey
Ford, Jim 64 SP4 Subaru STI Silver
Wall, Kevin 4 SPX1 Honda Civic Green/black
Wall, Bonnie 44 SPX1 Honda CRX S1 Teal
Van Veen, Benjamin Y 69 SPX1 Honda Civic Black
Van Veen, Tom Y 89 SPX1 Honda Civic Black
Empey, Sheridan 15 SPX2 Honda CRX S1 Red
Petroski, Greg 99 SPX3 Subaru Impreza Red
Ewald, Frank 259 SPX3 Nissan NX1600 White
Archer, Erle 59 SR Lotus 7 53 Green/yellow
Caven, Robert Y 67 Vintage Morris Mini Blue
Pickering, Derek Y 611 Vintage Chev LT Z28 Black
Thorkelson, Brent SPEC HTAC Porsche GT3 White
62nd Leavitt Machinery Knox Mountain Hill Climb