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Dornbos Reviews...

The 2001 NHRA Mile High Nationals

By Doug Dornbos

I just returned from the Mile-Hi Nationals at Bandimere Speedway in Colorado. Here are a few impressions:

1. It was deathly hot. I saw one person carried out of the stands by the medical people. I almost had to carry my dad out.

2. The green chile burritos available at A.J.'s Burrito stand are pretty good. No harmful aftereffects either. I got the one with potatoes instead of beans. Next time I'll order the hot chilies instead of the mild but the girl in front of me said the milds were REALLY hot so I chickened out. Shaved beef/potato burrito ... $4. Chilies/cheese ... add $1.

3. I met long time Internet newsgroup poster CIDBONE and want to say what a great few minutes that was, one of the highlights of the race for me. It's nice to met people in the "real world" who I talk to online. HEY CID ... I said I'd buy you a Haagen-Dazs if you came by and then I was so surprised by your visit that I never even thought about it. Next time I'll do better. It was a pleasure to meet you.

4. Haagen-Dazs ... $4

5. It's a dangerous thing to be walking across the staging lanes watching people still working on their car while it's rolling. Hey ... watch out for those wheelie bars! (I caught him before he went down).

6. This track has got "getting out of the parking lot" down to a science. We were out within 10 minutes both days. BUT every year we get in the wrong lane somehow and have to turn in a direction we don't want to go once we get to the main road. But we got to the main road fast!

7. The crowds were bigger than I have seen here in the last 3 years. The paper said 33,000 on Friday and I imagined the count was a little higher both Saturday and Sunday.

8. This is a great facility. I'm glad they aren't moving for a while. But boy, you can see the houses coming out to them. I hope they're race fans!

9. I did not have the sense of history being made as WJ broke Glidden's PS record for wins nor as Angelle did Shirley's pro win record in. I honestly thought the kid had WJ.

10. I shopped for other seats where I would be less bothered by people standing up. I think I found some.

11. I met Roscoe Forton's brother Chris in the Chuck Etchells pit. Very nice guy. He spent a few minutes talking with my dad and I. Thanks Chris! (and Roscoe)

12. There was a tribute run in memory of Dave Schultz. Was the rider supposed to come up on the rev limiter during the run like that or did she just miss a shift?

13. Small top alcohol ... whoops, I mean Federal Mogul fields.

14. They announced Sunday that the sportsman competitors would either have to leave before the final round or wait for an hour after the final round before they would be let out of the gate due to traffic control. Strange way to treat the people who were there to put on part of your show.

15. Not an inline-6 in sight. :(

Hey, that must be the important stuff since that's what came to mind. C-ya at the races. 


During Saturday, my Dad and I drank a jug of water and a few sodas each. It was REALLY hot but I thought we were OK. My Dad started to get uncomfortable due to muscle tension for some reason throughout the day. He rented one of those seat backs to be more comfortable which helped only a little. On Sunday, he started right out being uncomfortable. His neck & shoulder muscles really bothered him throughout the day and it was very taxing for him to get back to the car. I had asked him in the middle of the day if he wanted to go home and catch the late rounds on TV. He said no. 

He dropped me off at the curb at the airport on Monday and didn't feel like walking to the terminal, which isn't like him. On Tuesday, his vision got messed up and he couldn't quite get it together to get on with his day so his wife took him to the emergency room. After a battery of tests, it was determined that due to sitting out in the sun for 2 days, he had dehydrated to the point of kidney failure. He doesn't need dialysis but was past the point of just drinking a few glasses of water and having it all be better. They are thinking that he'll be good to go in a couple of days of intravenous rehydration.

Hey everybody: Drink gobs of water not just during the day at the track but also the couple of days before. I'm pretty amazed that he was getting that sick and I was unaware of it. I'm thanking God he's going to be OK.

Doug Dornbos



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