He is the unsung hero and secret pacemaker behind the successful Pikes Peak project: Dieter Depping. The man from Hannover (Germany), who celebrates his 52nd birthday today on 7 August, has been a motorsport test and development driver for Volkswagen for 16 years. Without him, the twelve titles in the World Rally Championship (WRC), a further two titles in the FIA World Rallycross Championship (WRX), the three Dakar victories with the Race Touareg, and the many class wins at the Nürburgring 24 Hours would have been inconceivable. Or, as Romain Dumas puts it: “Dieter was my second throttle foot. Without him, the record on Pikes Peak would not have been possible”. The fact that this quote from Dumas came just moments after the ground-breaking 7:57.148 minutes, in which he had made motorsport and electromobility history, speaks volumes of the key role that Dieter Depping has played in the Volkswagen Motorsport success story.