Record Racer Turnout Greets Street Car Takeover In Denver

Street Car Takeover, now in its fourth season, combines a unique blend of racing and partying all in one action-packed event . This new trend of combining drag racing and roll racing with an epic car show series was started in 2014 by Justin Keith and Chase Lautenbach. The series travels all over the country, stopping at tracks from coast to coast. For the second year in a row, the series paid a visit to the scenic Bandimere Speedway near Denver, Colorado, and once again, the mile-high strip set the record for largest competitor car count.

In 2016, Denver saw 324 competitors assemble on top the mountain at Bandimere, and the streetcar community didn’t disappoint this time around, amassing a staggering 512 competitors that jammed the staging lanes.

The event kicked off with a pre-race party at Twin Peaks Restaurant Friday night where competitors and spectators mingled while enjoying a live DJ, food, and a chassis dyno competition leading up to Saturday’s events.Race day began with roll racing in the morning, where many drag racers entered to get more laps under their belts for the battle later on. These classes included King of The Bakery, Front Wheel Drive Heads-Up, and Rear Wheel Drive Heads-Up.

Roll Racing Winners
King of the Bakery: Steve Tasca 2009 GTR
RWD: Travis Akins 2012 Mustang GT
FWD: Bora Tork 1997 Integra

The layout of Bandimere Speedway provides a unique setting and hosts the largest of the Street Car Takeover series’ Roll Racing competition. The majority of the roll race competitors also entered the traditional Drag Racing competition later that evening.

The majority of the competitors remained for the drag racing showdown later on in the day. An unexpected thunderstorm delayed the evening’s events by about an hour and a half but the track quickly returned things to order. With major bragging rights and thousands of dollars on the line, everyone was vying for the crown in their respective classes. Long time Denver area racer Doug Paddock tells us, “SCT introduces two different styles of straight-line motorsports to each all in a safe environment.”

Photo gallery


Drag Racing Winners

Street Racer: Lance Knigge 1990 Mustang

Garage Built Racing Small Tire: Derek Cooper 1989 Mustang

Street Outlaw: Jonny Santanni 1979 Corvette

Monster Clutches Stick Shift: John Queen 2012 GT500

Extreme Street 10.00 Index: Curtis Smith 2016 Mustang GT

Daily Driver 11.00 index: Mickey Buerger 1968 Camaro

Daily Driver Mild 12.00 index: Dennis Marshall 1968 Camaro

Street Truck: David Pineda 2007 Silverado

FWD Heads up: Bora Tork 1994 Civic

Street Bike: Mike DeYoung

We took look around the vast number of cars in the pits at Bandimere and found some pretty sleek stuff. At any of the Street Car Takeover events, you’ll find everything from Porsche’s to early and late model Camaro’s and Mustang’s and virtually everything in between–as long as it’s a street car, it can race! Here are our top picks of the baddest street machines in Denver.

Thea Zancanella’s 2003 Twin-Turbo Cobra

Thea Zancanella owns this wicked twin-turbo Mustang and Denver was her first time racing at Street Car Takeover. ” It was great to see such a large car count and rows of spectators at a local event. I expect this thing to take off at next year.” The Mustang is complete with an Accufab 5.4-liter Mod Motor, Turbo 400 from Proformance, stock suspension, and a 25.3 chassis built by Scott Patten Performance. She purchased the car at at auction as a lemon in 2003 with just 1,510 miles. The best ET thus far in the eighth-mile is 4.57 at a best MPH of 165.27. Accolades include the 2014 PSCS Rocky Mountain Summer Series XDR Champion, won two out of three PSCA RMSS Xtreme Drag Radial races in 2015, and the 2016 Modular Outlaw winner in Memphis at the Mod Motor Nationals.

Lance Knigge’s Big-Block Chevy-Powered Notchback

Lance Knigge campaigns this wicked 1990 Notchback Mustang, which is complete with 548 cubic-inch big-block Chevy backed by a 118 mm turbo. The engine is tuned by Lance himself, using a Holley EFI system. Other goodies include AFR 385 heads, a Dart block, Callies crank and rods, a Rossler Oowerglide, PTC convertor, Team A 9-inch rearend and suspension. The car runs on E85, producing some 2,000 horsepower. All-steel, it weighs in at over 3,400 pounds.

Lance drives it all over the place and even takes his kids for ice cream in it. To date, It’s been mid sevens at 190 mph. He’s won Street Car Takeover at Denver two years in a row, and this year also won the Street Car Shootout in Salt Lake City and Colorado Street Outlaws. He’s also appeared on the TV show Street Outlaws and NBC’s Grudge Race, with plans to travel to many more grudge events.

Kevin Guthrie’s Impala

Kevin Guthrie runs this big-bodied Impala that he purchased back in 1996. The current combination is a 615 cubic-inch, all-aluminum, naturally aspirated Schadle race engine, with a gear-jamming Jeffco four-speed. In Denver it’s been 8.79 at 156 in this configuration and has gone 7.52 at 192 with a ProCharger combo. The Impala has won many Colorado Street Outlaw races and a couple stick shift races at Bandimere. It’s all steel except for the hood and bumpers, all real glass, and has current license plates and insurance. It’s also appeared on Street Outlaws!

Joey Kenville’s Shop-Built ’93 Mustang

This multi-colored single turbocharged 1993 Mustang sports a 25.3 chassis that was built in-house at Overkill Race Cars. It packs a 420 cubic-inch small-block Ford with a Precision 88 mm Turbo and an M&M TH400 transmission. To date, Joey’s best ET in X275 trim has been 4.72 and 155 mph. He went undefeated in the PSCA Rocky Mountain Series in the XDR class, also qualifying number one at every event.

Steve Carlton Photos

Matt Paris’s 57 Chevy 210

This beautiful 1957 Chevy 210 is powered by a 565 Big Duke headed big-block Chevy based around a Dart block, with two nitrous oxide kits and backed by a Powerglide transmission. The car sports the original ’57 frame, ladder bar rear suspension, and OEM front suspension, joined with a 25.5 certified chrome-moly cage. It’s all factory steel minus a fiberglass hood and bumpers. The best pass to date is 8.19 at 170.28 mph in Denver. Matt bought the car in 1990 for $500 dollars and it was daily-driven for six years before it was in an accident. After that, Matt and his best friends built the car how you see it today in just a two car garage at his house.

“When all was said and done, the event was a success,” said promotors’s Justin Keith and Chase Lautenbach. “We had two hundred more cars then last year, so we had to adapt and adjust things accordingly.” Street Car Takeover is an event for everyone, and we expect all our events to grow for the remainder of the season.”

About the author

Eddie Maloney

A resident of Las Vegas, Eddie has been involved in drag racing most of his life. Currently an NHRA tech and photographer, he has served 17 years in the military.
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