Why it's still cool to burn rubber in Colorado

CONTENT PROVIDED BY BANDIMERE SPEEDWAY

Race fans know that Bandimere Speedway offers some of the best high octane action in the country, hosting more than 120 race events each year.  But Bandimere is so much more than cool cars and a blazing fast ¼ mile track, it’s part of the Colorado fabric, with a history as bright as a Christmas Tree (drag racing term aka “the Tree”: The noticeable electronic starting device between the lanes on the starting line. It displays a calibrated-light countdown for each driver).  Want more race know-how? 

RELATED: Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals are this weekend.

Here are 9 Things You Didn’t (But Should) Know About Bandimere Speedway

1. Track Tradition
Though everything else at Bandimere Speedway has changed over its 59-year history, the actual quarter-mile racing surface is in the exact original location that John Bandimere Sr. placed it when he constructed the track.

2.  What Happened In 1958
John Bandimere Sr. planned to build his race track in Arvada, but opted instead to lay his track on its current location in Morrison.  Using second-hand equipment, he moved all the needed dirt to build the facility by himself.  Today, Bandimere Speedway is one of the five oldest continuous run drag racing facilities in the country, celebrating its 60th anniversary in 2018.

3.  When We Say High Octane, We Mean It.
With a track elevation of 5,800 feet, Bandimere Speedway is the highest national-level racing facility in the country. No other track – NASCAR, Indy Car or NHRA is above 3,000 feet. With the high elevation, it decreases the down force on a race car by up to 20 percent, and takes away approximately 10-15% of the horsepower, from the same engine at sea level.

4.  Singularly Cool
Bandimere Speedway is the only track period that includes a cooling system to control the track temperature for the first 300 feet. The track has an intricate cooling system built under the concrete that can drop the track temperature by close to 30 degrees. This helps with traction and has contributed to runs in excess of 326 mph in the first 1000 feet.

5.  Bandimere Started The Clock
The timing system that is standard in the world of drag racing was developed at Bandimere Speedway. In 1977, Bob Brockmeyer, owner of Compulink, and John Bandimere Jr. worked to build a system that accurately measured the time and speed of a vehicle in the quarter-mile. Much of what was used at the beginning came from the mining industry and photo cell technology. Today, the system uses infrared lights to accurately record cars that cover the quarter-mile in less than five seconds.

6.  Safety First
When Bandimere Speedway was built, it was also named Safety Proving Grounds of America, thus giving car manufacturers a reliable facility on which to test new production vehicles as well as high-performance racing parts.   The second early directive of the track was to give kids in the Denver area a safe place to go fast.

7. The Longest Run For The ¼ Mile
2017 marks the 47th anniversary of the Mile-High NHRA Nationals at Bandimere Speedway, the longest running national event sponsorship in the history of the NHRA.  Mopar has been the title sponsor for the last 30 years.  The 2017 event takes place July 21-23.  Tickets are now available online at www.Bandimere.com

8.  Nitro Knockouts
Bandimere Speedway is home to Nitro Knockouts, a girls only club for women who love motorsports and having a good time on and off the track. The group has more than 500 members and host special events at the track, along with off-site events to help give back to the community.

9. Youth Movement
Continuing the vision of John Sr. and Frances Bandimere, Bandimere Speedway boasts the best youth program in the country with more than 300 kids, ages of 5 to 18, competing at the facility. It’s home to the largest Jr. Dragster program in the country, and has hosted the Pepsi All-American High School Drags for over 40 years.  “Race To Read” is a Bandimere program that helps elementary-age students develop a love of reading. In 2017, the program partnered with more than 65 schools in the Denver area, and gave young readers free tickets for themselves and one adult to the NAPA Auto Parts Night of Fire & Thunder in May.

Put these Bandimere facts in your gas tank as Colorado prepares for the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals July 21 - 23. For tickets and information on all events www.bandimere.com

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