Denver: Doug Kalitta preview

Doug Kalitta looks to finally cross Denver off his "need to win" list this weekend at Bandimere Speedway MORRISON, Col., (July 9, 2009) -- When the 2009 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series kicked off in February, there were only six...

Doug Kalitta looks to finally cross Denver off his "need to win" list this weekend at Bandimere Speedway

MORRISON, Col., (July 9, 2009) -- When the 2009 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series kicked off in February, there were only six drag strips on the national event circuit that 31-time Top Fuel winner Doug Kalitta had yet to make a visit to the winner's circle. He crossed Pomona (Calif.) off of that notorious list by winning at the famed race track at the season-opening Winternationals event. Kalitta, driver of the No. 50 Kalitta Motorsports Top Fuel dragster, will have his pen ready to cross Denver off the unrenowned register after this weekend's, July 10-12, annual running of the Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals at Bandimere Speedway in Morrison, Col., just a few miles west of the Denver city limits.

Kalitta, a 56-time Top Fuel finalist, has raced for the Denver title three times in his career, with runner-up postings in 1999, 2001, and 2003. He is hopeful that his trip to the Rocky Mountains this year will yield an overdue winning result.

"Yeah, we've been close a few times, but we just haven't been able to leave Denver with a trophy yet," Kalitta, a 12-year NHRA veteran and 44-year old resident of Ann Arbor, Mich., said. "It's a tricky place to race with the heat and the altitude. I always enjoy going to Bandimere, though. The facility is great and the scenery of the mountains is really something.

"We've been struggling a bit at the past few races, so we've made some pretty drastic changes to our dragster since Norwalk (Ohio, previous event). We're confident we've done the right things to get our performance level back up where it needs to be. Hopefully that means we will get a shot at winning Denver this weekend."

The remaining race tracks on Kalitta's "need to win" list are located in Norwalk, Seattle, Indianapolis, and Charlotte.

Kalitta's trip to the winner's circle in Pomona this year was his first win since the fall of 2007. Kalitta has finished in the top ten in Full Throttle Top Fuel championship points in every season of his drag racing career. He is currently in 9th place in Full Throttle championship points. He is married to Josie, and they have a son, Mitchell, 8, and a daughter, Avery, 5.

-credit: km

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Series NHRA
Drivers Doug Kalitta