On Saturday, Aug. 23, Las Vegas Motor Speedway and INEX officials conducted a Bandolero test session at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway to explore future drag racing applications.  The Bandolero car, which is mass-produced by LVMS's parent company, Speedway Motorsports, Inc., under the 600 Racing banner, is designed for competition by children 8 years and older and is primarily raced on ovals and road courses.

"We've received several requests from parents who have an interest in youth drag racing who want cars that can be purchased ready-to-race, have cost controls to keep the program economical, can be used for other racing applications, and self-starting that can be raced in a heads-up format," said Chris Blair, LVMS's vice president of racing operations. "The 600 Racing Bandolero accomplishes all of these goals  and fills one huge void, since it resembles a Funny Car, which today is the most popular class of drag racing today."

The car used in the test was a stock-from-the-showroom 600 Racing Bandolero from Las Vegas and used the basic set-up for the Bullring, LVMS's 3/8-mile paved oval. The car made multiple runs on a 1/8-mile drag strip and reached a top speed of 57.85 mph (12.78 sec. E.T.). Officials predict that with a clutch spring adjustment, gear change and a change from new treaded tires to a cut tire, the cars should be able to break into the 10-sec. range and reach 1/8-mile speeds in excess of 70 mph.

"The great thing about these cars is that we can create a full-bodied, spec drag racing class where drivers may compete in a heads-up format so that the first one to the finish line wins," continued Blair. "That will encourage some parents who have fears of how to 'dial-in' a car for E.T. bracket racing to join the sport.

"Another great aspect of the 600 Racing Bandolero is that a complete car may be purchased for less than $8,000," said Blair. "There are some Jr. Dragster teams who have that much invested in their motors alone."

Additional tests will be conducted at The Strip at LVMS and an exhibition event will be held in late 2008.  Plans also are in place INEX to host a series of Bandolero and Legends Cars heads-up, 1/8- mile drag races at The Strip in 2009. There currently are more than 40 Bandoleros and 60 Legends Cars within a one-hour drive of the LVMS facility.

"Our ultimate goal is to host a day of racing here at LVMS known as the "Iron Legend"' and "Iron Bandolero," Blair explained. "A driver would use the same car to drag race, road race and oval race all in a one-day format."

For more information, please call The Strip's office at (702) 632-8213 or visit www.LVMS.com.