Pikes Peak and WRC VW Golfs set for 2019 Austrian Ice Races

Two iconic Volkswagen Golf GTI Mk2 vehicles will tackle the Austrian ice races of Zeil am See – the 1986 Group A rally machine and the outrageous 1987 Pikes Peak Mk2

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Volkswagen is set for a family get together on January 19 and 20, 2019. Three generations of VW motorsport will tackle the Austrian ice races of Zeil am See – including the futuristic ID.R and current Polo GTI R5.

However, there’s some heritage action going on that’s spiked our interest – as the 1986 Volkswagen MK2 GTI Group A rally car and 1987 Pikes Peak Golf Mk2 are set to make an appearance on the icy racetrack.

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Kenneth Eriksson won the Group A category of the World Rally Championship – a support category to the fire-breathing Group B era WRC cars – with the Golf Mk2 GTI some 32 years ago. Its somewhat wilder brother took on an altogether faster challenge; the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb of 1987.

The twin-engined Golf Mk2 caused a stir at the time, tackling the infamous Peak course with Klaus-Joachim 'Jochi' Kleint at the wheel and 592bhp on tap. Kleint was on track for victory until suspension trouble forced him to retire just meters from the finish line. Terminated with the chequered flag in sight, it would take Volkswagen 31 years before they returned in 2018 to settle the score.

Petrolheads and enthusiasts will be able to witness both of these heritage icons take to the icy racetrack, alongside a third Golf GTI Mk2 wearing a Triumph Adler livery.

The driver line-up for the Ice Race is no less impressive, with Pikes Peak record-holder Romain Dumas joined by Kleint.

When not on track, the vehicles will be on display for all to see, alongside the cutting-edge Volkswagen ID. R, which this year set a widely-acclaimed all-time record on the legendary Pikes Peak with a fully-electric drive, allowing a glimpse of what to expect from future developments.

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