View Full Version : Who is The Better Driver

2009.07.26, 10:24 PM
Here is the almost cult classic "Climb Dance" video of Ari Vatanen going up Pikes Peak in a Peugeot 405 back in 1988.


Here is a recent Ford's rendition of that video using a Fiesta up the same route driven by Marcus Gronholm.


After watching both videos, a question poped into mind. Who drove better up the climb. They are obviously both top drivers. Maybe is my imagination, but seems like one of them took much better line than the other.

2009.07.27, 12:00 AM
I can't tell whose lines are better, but I think Vatanen has more guts -- I don't see much margin for error in his video, while Gronholm seems to leave plenty of space not to fall off that cliff.

2009.07.27, 09:25 AM
I don't think you can make a comparison...

1. Ari Vatanen's car is one of the last groupB rally cars that had upwards of an 800bhp/ton power to weight ratiowhich wouldve been a bigger handful than the rallycross Fiesta. (edit: I just noticed you list that Fiesta at 800bhp...doesn't look that fast to me.)

2. The course of Pike's Peak has been paved to death since Ari's 88 season climb with 2/3rds of it being paved for safety and erosdion maintenance.

They obviously are both very commited drivers (taking tight/fast lines in the hairpins and using quite a bit more road than the average guy) but I think you'd have to say that the differences are too varied to make an informed decision.

If you were asking which of them was a better driver overall (and not specifically about Pike's Peak) I'd give the nod to Ari Vatanen. I believe that if you had the ability to time travel back and forth to place each driver at their highest skill level in each other equipment Ari would have the edge on Gronholm.;)

2009.07.27, 02:03 PM
My vote is for Ari. Killer B's were the most exciting class, and form of racing at the time. I hated to see it end. Thanks for the flash back.

2009.07.27, 02:28 PM
Marcu's run looked to be on much better dirt, there was a lot lest dust and he's way more controlled, I'm curious as to the time difference between the runs, has anyone come across that? If Ari was faster I would give him the nod for sure.

2009.07.27, 05:25 PM
Jesus... Vatanen... That guy has balls of steel. Stainless type.

I love the way he takes one hand off the wheel to shade his eyes.

Just thrilling...

2009.07.27, 10:56 PM
The time for Ari in Climb Dance was 10:47.22
Time for Marcus in the Ford was 11:28.963, but he did blow the turbo about 3/4 of the way up.
However, given that 2/3 of the road is now paved. I though Ari drove much better than Marcus. Ari used the entire corner, and at one point had a rear wheel right at the edge. That was very skillful driving. Having seen the Climb Dance video first, first initial impression of the Ford video was disappointing. Marcus drove too conservative.
Climb Dance is still the best racing video I have seen out there.

2009.07.29, 08:43 AM
Here's a recent video of Rhys Millen breaking the 2wd record

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMuFnaKCuaQ&eurl=http%3A%2F%2Fjalopnik.com%2F5324662%2Fin%2Bca r-video-with-rhys-millen-setting-2wd-pikes-peak-record&feature=player_embedded

2009.07.29, 03:18 PM
Saw that one -- that was excellent. The lines were conservative but Millen's hands are even smoother than Vatanen's IMO. :eek: