Anderson looks to expand Denver triumphs
Mooresville, N.C., July 16, 2014 – Summit Racing Pro Stock driver Greg Anderson has a certain fondness for this time of year as NHRA’s Mello Yello Drag Racing Series tour kicks off the Western Swing, a demanding set of three consecutive races that take place out West, starting at Bandimere Speedway in Denver with this weekend’s Mile-High NHRA Nationals. The Western Swing, which also includes events in Sonoma, Calif., and Seattle, Wash., has long been a feared block of races, stretching competitors, teams and crew chiefs to their limits as they battled vastly varying conditions and a strict schedule far from home base.
For a select few, however, the three races in a row have marked a moment of glory, a time of tremendous celebration. Only seven drivers in the history of NHRA have managed the accomplishment of sweeping the Western Swing – and Anderson holds the honor of having done it in 2004, winning each of the three events on consecutive weekends.
No driver has done it more than once, no driver has done it since 2009, and Anderson is the only Pro Stock competitor to have ever achieved the monumental goal.
Winning the Denver event is, perhaps, the loftiest of the three requirements to “Sweep the Swing.” The racing facility is pristine and scenic, but the conditions at the high altitude racetrack pose a challenge for tuners as they work to extract every bit of horsepower from naturally aspirated engines starving for air. The numbers that appear on the scoreboards reflect a loss of power shared by all, but in the history of Anderson’s career, he has held a relatively strong track record there. Four times he has been the No. 1 qualifier, and twice he has won the Mile-High Nationals.
“It’s a very tough place to race, and it’s always been tough, but we have had some success there,” said Anderson. “Lately, the Mopars have seemed to run well there and have a good combination for what that track wants, but that just puts an extra challenge out there for us. We would love to put one of our Summit Racing Chevrolet Camaros on the pole and in the winner’s circle on Sunday. There is nothing we would like better than to beat those guys on their home turf.”
Anderson and the Summit Racing team tested their Chevrolet Camaros at a racetrack near their home base in Mooresville, N.C. last week and feel that they are on track for an upswing. Currently No. 11 in the series standings and aiming for the top 10 before the Countdown to the Championship begins in six races, Anderson also takes experience into account when it comes to tackling the mile-high conditions at Bandimere Speedway.
“We have a lot of notes from racing in Denver, a lot of notes,” said Anderson. “The KB Racing crew has been working very hard on our engine package, and I think we’ve made a little bit of headway in the last week or so. We’re closer to where we need to be, so we’re anxious to go race. Denver is a tough challenge, but I think we have an understanding of what it takes to run fast there. I expect our Summit Racing Camaros to do well this weekend.”