Story By: SARA SLAUGHTER / JOHN FORCE RACING – MORRISON, CO – Already with three wins this season, Brittany Force is just one winners circle shy of equaling the most productive season of her professional career. Force and the Flav-R-Pac / Monster Energy Chevy dragster team head to the Dodge Power Brokers Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway just 12 points out of the Top Fuel points lead.
Entering the first of three races in the grind of the Western Swing, Force and the Flav-R-Pac team have already secured wins at the Las Vegas Four-Wide, Houston SpringNationals and NHRA Virginia Nationals as well as three No. 1 qualifiers including the top spot at the most recent event in Norwalk, Ohio where they set both ends of the track record. Force and her David Grubnic and Mac Savage led team now hold 10 elapsed time and 12 speed records at the 19 tracks on the 2022 NHRA Camping World circuit.
“Finally heading to the West Coast for the Western Swing with my Flav-R-Pac team. Three stops in three starting this weekend in Denver. We are currently sitting number two in points and are aiming to get that lead back. Our team plans to make four quality start to finish qualifying runs, qualify top five and go rounds on race day,” Force said. “This West Coast circuit feels home to me. My sisters and I grew up at these racetracks. They all have so many memories dating back to being a little kid. I’m hoping for some new memories this year starting with getting into the winners circle at Denver.”
Although she has yet to win the Mile-High Nationals, she was runner-up to J.R, Todd in 2014 and was the No. 1 qualifier a year ago, lowering the track record to its present 3.717-seconds but had a second-round exit on race day. Force and the Flav-R-Pac team have been the team against whom everyone else’s performance has been measured over the last several seasons.
ROBERT HIGHT EAGER TO KEEP UP MOMENTUM
Points leader and most recent event winner Robert Hight and the Automobile Club of Southern California Chevrolet Camaro SS team enter the Dodge Power Broker NHRA Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway eager for another victory at a track that has been good to them in the past.
The Mile-High NHRA Nationals is one of seven events Robert Hight and his Auto Club Chevy team have won four or more times. The only event where they have hoisted the trophy more often than he has at Bandimere Speedway is the season-opening Winternationals in which they have prevailed five times. Hight recorded victories at the Mile-High Nationals in 2005 (en route to his Rookie of the Year Award) 2010, 2014 and his 2017 championship season and has started from the No. 1 spot in 2005, 2007 and 2019.
“I’m really excited for the Swing to start. I love getting into these back-to-back races, you really get to get some momentum,” Hight said. “I’ve enjoyed celebrating that win in Norwalk for two weeks but I’m ready to get back in the seat of my Auto Club Chevy on the West Coast. I’ll have a lot of family out over the three weeks and I’m hoping we can celebrate in the winner’s circle at least a couple of times, although the goal is to go for the sweep, and that starts this weekend at Bandimere.”
After winning the most recent event in the series at Norwalk, Ohio, Hight and the Auto Club team are back in the Camping World points lead by 21. Their performance through the first half of the season, which includes back-to-back wins at the season-opening Winternationals and Arizona Nationals as well as a victory alongside Top Fuel teammate Brittany Force in Richmond Virginia, has kept the Jimmy Prock and Chris Cunningham tuned Auto Club Camaro as a top contender and a team to watch for the remainder of 2022 competition.
AUSTIN PROCK FINDING THEIR STRIDE HEADING TO DENVER
Austin Prock and the Montana Brand / Rocky Mountain Twist Chevrolet dragster team hold onto the fifth spot in the Top Fuel points standings as they head to this weekend’s Dodge Power Brokers NHRA Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway. They’ll look to solidify their position with their first win of the season.
Austin Prock takes his second shot at the Western Swing in a Montana Brand/Rocky Mountain Twist dragster prepared by veteran crew chiefs Joe Barlam and Rahn Tobler. In his first and only driving appearance in the Mile-High Nationals in 2019, Prock qualified ninth before a first-round exit. Although he has yet to win a round of racing at Bandimere Speedway, Prock has a good pedigree for racing at Denver’s mile-high altitude. His dad, Jimmy, has tuned Robert Hight to four Denver wins and, before that, won Mile-High titles tuning Top Fuel in 1999 and 2000.
“I’m excited to get the Western Swing going, it was a long break, but we are all stocked up and prepared to win,” Prock said. “Back in 2019 my team really started to hit our strides on the Swing and came out with a win. I feel like we are capable to do it again. I know all of us are ready to see this Montana Brand / Rocky Mountain Twist dragster in victory lane, and hope the time is this weekend.”
Prock is coming off two strong semifinal performances that included a career best elapsed time 3.672-second pass at the Virginia NHRA Nationals and despite a first-round loss last week at Bristol, Tenn., the third generation drag racer remains fifth in points. Prock will try to get back on track in a Montana Brand / RMT dragster prepared by crew chiefs Joe Barlam and Rahn Tobler. Prock is bidding for his second tour victory after winning at Seattle in 2019 and subsequently earning NHRA Rookie of the Year recognition.
JOHN FORCE LOOKS TO CONTINUE DOMINATION OF BANDIMERE SPEEDWAY
Winner of an unprecedented 1,400 rounds of Funny Car racing, John Force and the PEAK Antifreeze and Coolant Chevrolet Camaro returns to one of his favorite tracks, Bandimere Speedway, for the Dodge Power Brokers NHRA Mile-High Nationals, an event he has won more often than any driver in any class.
Bandimere Speedway is the track on which Force was the first driver in either Top Fuel or Funny Car to break the 300 mile an hour barrier. Force’s Denver wins came in 1994, 1995, 1996, 2001, 2003, 2011, 2016 and 2018. His first Denver win in 1994 led to a sweep of the Western Swing, the only time a Funny Car driver has won the three-race set in a single season. He started the Mile-Highs from the No. 1 position in 1987, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1996, 2014 and 2015
“I have a lot of history at this track, a lot of good memories,” Force said. “Kicking off the Western Swing in Denver is tradition. We have some great partners coming out, Gates Belts and our new sponsor NK Seeds will be out for the first time. Excited to put on a good show for our partners and the fans. It’s always a packed house and it’s a beautiful facility.”
After prevailing earlier this year at the Circle K NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at Charlotte, Force is trying to win multiple events for the 27th different season. He currently has the PEAK Antifreeze and Coolant sitting solidly in the No. 4 position in the points standings.
Racing at the Dodge Power Brokers NHRA Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway begins with qualifying Friday at 4:30 and 8:00 p.m. and Saturday at 3:30 and 7:00 p.m. Eliminations are slated to begin Sunday at 11 a.m. Television coverage of the event will start with qualifying shows on FOX Sports 1 (FS1) Friday at 10 p.m. ET and Sunday at 4 p.m. ET. Eliminations will air on FOX Broadcasting Network Sunday at 4 p.m. ET.