Can’t miss climb: Racers have ‘special affection’ for Grand Junction event
Rod Moberly has raced the world-famous Pikes Peak Hill Climb, but he refuses to miss the Lands End Hill Climb.
“Steve Goeglien and I agree, you don’t miss Grand Junction,” he said. “That’s where I started in 1986. I have a special affection for it.”
The Lands End Hill Climb begins at 8 a.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. on Sunday. The road closes at 7 a.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. on Sunday, but will open periodically for spectator traffic. Spectators are encouraged to arrive early to find the best available seat for the races.
Tickets are $12 for both days at the gate. Children ages 12 and younger are admitted free. Spectators will be issued a wristband for admission and will be required to wear the wristband if they return for the second day of racing. The wristband is also good for a free pint of Rockslide’s house beers.
A few of the cars will be on display tonight at the Grand Junction Downtown Farmers Market, including Todd Cook’s Super Sprint car and Lance McCann’s Yamaha Banshee all-terrain vehicle.
Moberly, 47, of Colorado Springs was in Grand Junction one week ago to prepare for this year’s Lands End race. The Colorado Hill Climb Association president is not only racing this weekend, he’s running the event.
Moberly is one of the remaining few who raced Lands End back in the day when they raced all the way to the top.
“It’s a beautiful place,” he said. “The road itself is enticing. It’s the best road we race on all year. The whole trip is fun.”
Sponsors include Girardi’s Towing, Skyline Construction, Ben Dowd Construction, Snob Productions, Rock Star Customs and the Moab 4x4 Outpost.
Classes include Ultra 4 (rock crawler buggies), Quads, Super Stock Truck, Comp Truck, Super Sprint, Camp, 2-wheel drive rally cars, 4-wheel drive rally cars, Open Comp, Sportsman, Stock Car and Juniors. The Ultra 4 class will be competing for a qualifying spot in the King of the Hammers rock crawlers race next month in Reno, Nev.
The Lands End Hill Climb started in 1940 as a timed event.
There will be a lot on the line this weekend at the Western Colorado Dragway — a Wally trophy, spots on the NHRA Division 5 team and some extra cash.
Track co-manager Teri Styers is expecting the best attended race to date with so much at stake.
Drivers can have test ‘n’ tune runs from 6-9 tonight to prepare for a three-day weekend of races.
A Crazy 8s Jackpot race will coincide with the street-legal races at 7 on Friday night. The Crazy 8s races will be 1/8 mile instead of the usual 1/4 mile. Entry fee is $20 for drivers and $7 for spectators. The purse is $300 for the winners and $150 for the runners-up.
On Saturday, all four classes, plus the J&A Super Quick Series, will race. Time trials take place in the afternoon, with finals beginning at 6 p.m.
Drivers will compete Sunday for the NHRA Wally Trophy. Gates open at 8:30 a.m. with time trials at 10 and finals at noon.
The gate fee is $10 for adults and racers on Saturday and Sunday.
Drivers will also have an opportunity to qualify for next month’s Summit Elapsed Time Series Divisional race in Topeka, Kan.