Watching Brittany Force in her Top Fuel dragster rocket down the dragstrip to set the speed record at Bandimere Speedway was truly a special moment. History was made in the town of Morrison, Colorado. The record is now set at 337.33 mph

This was the last time the NHRA would have an event at this location, as the track (and Bandimere Family) had announced it would be closing after the 2023 season. It’s safe to say this is the fastest anyone near Denver could travel in a vehicle for quite some time (or until a new dragstrip is built).

Brittany set the speed record at the 2023 Dodge Power Brokers NHRA Mile High Nationals. I purchased tickets last minute for both Saturday and Sunday. And I am super glad I did. The event completely sold out and the weather was phenomenal. 

It was just after 7pm on Saturday, July 15th and Brittany Force and her Monster Energy Top Fuel Dragster lined up at the Christmas Tree for the final qualifying session. She did not have an opponent for this pass. 

She took off and I could barely keep up with my phone camera. But I actually got a pretty decent video of her her going 337.33 mph with a 3.724-second ET (elapsed time to go 1,000 ft):

Brittany Force actually already held the elapsed time record for Bandimere, having hit a 3.717 second ET at 326 mph in 2021.

“I’ve been coming here with my sisters and my mom watching my dad in the stands since we were little kids. It’s a track that I grew up on. It’s sad to see it go away. With that, we want to end it on a good note.”

Brittany Force

Even though Brittany lost in the Top Fuel Elimination Round 1 to Rob Passey, she still ended her time at Bandimere on a good note. A record breaking good note.

Photos of the run:

Drag Racing At Elevation (5,800 feet)

Racing at a higher elevation presents challenges for both drivers and tuners. It’s more of an issue for gas powered cars that lose out on a significant chunk of horsepower due to the thinner air and less oxygen. Top fuel dragsters run on nitromethane, which I have been told is not impacted as much by air density. 

The elevation still presents challenges and this is why we have seen slightly slower times at the Mile High Nationals vs other NHRA tracks around the country. Bob Tasca III set a new speed record for 2024 in his Nitro Funny Car with an absurd 341.68 mph pass in 3.840 seconds. Tasca completed this feat at Bradenton Motorsports Park on February 9, 2024, at the Pro Superstar Shootout.

Former Speed Records At Bandimere Speedway 

Just about every year we see new top speed and elapsed time records. The cars just keep going faster. Here is a list of some of the speed and time records set over the years at the Thunder Mountain in Morrison, Colorado:   

  • 1998: John Force (Nitro Funny Car) hit 301.7 mph during a qualifying round at the Mile High Nationals. This made him the first 300 mph driver on the “mountain”.
  • 2006: Chip Ellis (Pro Stock Motorcycle) set the elapsed time record with a 7.332 second pass.
  • 2007: Allen Johnson (Pro Stock) set the elapsed time record with a 7.032 second pass.
  • 2007: Jason Line (Pro Stock) set the top speed record with a 195.73 mph pass. 
  • 2008: Greg Anderson (Pro Stock) set the top speed and elapsed time records in one pass. He ran a 7.02 second pass at 196.30 mph.

After 2008 The NHRA Switched from 1320 ft (quarter mile) down to 1000 ft races.

  • 2014: John Force (Nitro Funny Car) set the top speed record by hitting 318.39 mph.
  • 2015: John Force (Nitro Funny Car) made an elapsed time record of 4.015 seconds.
  • 2016: John Force (Nitro Funny Car) Breaks into the 3’s for Funny Cars with a 3.959 second ET at 317.79 mph.
  • 2018: Leah Pruett (Top Fuel) [ formerly and at the time, Leah Pritchett] broke the top speed record with a 3.799-second pass at 327.19 mph.
  • 2019: Steve Torrence (Top Fuel) set the speed record of 330.31 mph with an ET of 3.787 seconds. Torrence completed the pass during qualifying at the Mile High Nationals.
  • 2022: Matt Smith (Pro Stock Motorcycle) hit a 7.090 second ET at 189 mph. Smith became the first motorcycle rider to break into the 7.00s at Bandimere. Also later in the same weekend, Smith hit 190.22 mph with a 3.097 ET. His was the first motorcycle to break 190 mph at the track. 
  • 2021: Brittany Force (Top Fuel) set the elapsed time record with a 3.717 second pass at 326.00 mph.
  • 2022: Tim Wilkerson (Nitro Funny Car) set the top speed record for the Funny Car class by hitting 329.18 mph.
  • 2023: Brittany Force (Top Fuel) set the Bandimere top speed record by going 337.33 mph with an 3.724-second ET.

If you know of any more speed records at Bandimere from over the years. Drop a message on our contact form and I can include it in this list. 👍 

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