In a couple of weekends, one of the most interesting and fun races on the NHRA Mello Yello Tour will be contested at Bandimere Speedway outside of Denver, Colorado. The Mile High Nationals have been a staple on the tour since the 1979 season and was only off when the facility was being upgraded. The track is among the most scenic in the world and the racing environment is quite literally a mile outside of the comfort zone of teams being that the track’s elevation is over 5,000ft above sea level.
The fans are amazingly hardcore. I have been fortunate enough to be at this race for a couple of seasons and it is packed from beginning to end with fans that know and appreciate every single class that they are looking at. Combine that with meticulous care and maintenance from the Bandimere family and you have a place that is an ideal spot for magic to happen.
That magic HAS happened multiple times over the years but because we like round numbers we are going to jump back three decades to the 1986 running of the race. You need to watch eliminations in this one because there are big story lines. Glidden was only a handful of races past his horrible Atlanta wreck, Garlits was fresh off the insanity of the Englishtown blow over, and then there were guys like Eddie Hill.
Hill had been one of the most dominant boat drag racers in history and then made the switch to asphalt. It was not an easy road for Hill and it was at this 1986 race that he would turn his fortunes on their head. His bare white dragster was a fan favorite and you’ll see them erupt after the final round but certainly not for the reasons you are expecting.
This is a great watch and you’ll dig every inch of it!