Young drivers ready to race

Posted 5/18/11

Bandimere Speedway added a new twist by establishing an alumni class for those 23 and under to its annual Pepsi All-American High School Drag Races …

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Young drivers ready to race


Bandimere Speedway added a new twist by establishing an alumni class for those 23 and under to its annual Pepsi All-American High School Drag Races that will be held May 30 at at the track in Morrison.

“I think what Bandimere has done is great because now, I get to race my brother,” Littleton resident Chuck Quigley said. “I have been out of school a couple years and my brother graduated this year. He thinks his car is faster but I don’t agree. So, now we’ll get a chance to find out.”

Gates open at 8 a.m. and elimination races begin about 2 p.m. Bandimere limits the size of the field to about 600, so in order for all drivers to get timing runs, entries are cut off at 11 a.m.

In addition to the races, there is a car show, best appearing car and crew contest, and an opportunity to line up and race against a police officer in the Race a Cop Challenge.

To enter, the person behind the wheel must be a licensed driver. Rules also require the car be equipped with seat belts and the car must pass a technical inspection in which the vehicle is checked to ensure the seat belts are securely fastened to the frame, the brakes are good and there is plenty of tread on the tires. The driver of any vehicle that makes runs down the quarter-mile strip faster than 14 seconds is required to wear a helmet.

Tickets for spectators are $14, with children 12 and under admitted free. The entry fee for car and driver is $30.

For information on the event, visit the Web site at or call the track at 303-697-6001.

Competitors show up to race with all kinds of “wheels,” ranging from a hot rod that they drive in weekly races at the track to the family’s station wagon or mini-van.

To keep it as fair as possible, the races are un under a handicap system using what is called a dial-in time. A driver establishes a dial-in for his or her car during time trials. The dial-in system allows the slower vehicle in the head-to-head drag race to leave the starting line first. But to make sure the driver ran appropriate times during time trials, running quicker than the “dial-in time” is called breaking out and results in loss of the race if the other driver is at or slower than dial-in.

There also are separate classifications for different types of vehicles but the dial-in handicap system is used for all classifications.

High school students and 2011 graduate drivers behind the wheel of a street-legal car with regular tires are entered in the street tire classification. However, drivers who have cars using special tires called racing slicks on the car, are competing in the weekly high school class in the Ultra ET racing series classification. In addition, for the first time this year, there is the alumni class for high school graduates 23 or younger.

Winning means moving on to the next round. Losing means it's time to go home. The elimination races continue until a single driver captures the finals.

There are merchandise prizes for the winners of the later brackets and the day's champion earns a shot at returning Labor Day to vie for the grand prize, a trip to Frank Hawley's drag racing school in Florida.


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