John Force Racing Tops the Field for NHRA SpringNationals
With sixteen Funny Car season titles to his name, John Force is still setting records at 69 years of age. This past weekend the patriarch of JFR (John Force Racing) posted a 3.888 second ET at 319.29 mph to claim top qualifier in his class at the 32nd annual Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil. Not to be outdone, daughter Brittany Force, the black sheep in a family filled with Funny Car drivers, set a new track record at Houston Raceway with a 3.661 ET at 332.18 mph run in Top Fuel. It was the first time in the history of the sport that a father and daughter both qualified number one for the Nitro events.
The father and daughter's hopes of standing on the podium together were nixed, when his son-in-law Robert Hight, defeated his boss in the semifinal round of Sunday's SpringNationals. Driving the AAA Texas Insurance Chevrolet Camaro to his third career win at Houston Raceway Park, Hight also defeated Jonnie Lindberg and defending Funny Car Champion J.R. Todd before taking down Matt Hagan in the Final with a 3.941 ET at 310.84 mph.
Brittany Force had completed the cycle of all Force family members having won at the Houston facility with her final round win last season over Terry McMillen. After setting a new track record, she had high hopes of repeating her win from a year ago. On her way to a victory over three-time world champion Antron Brown, Brittany Force eliminated Cameron Ferre, Dough Kalitta and Clay Millican. Well shy of her new track record, Force laid down a run of 3.749 seconds at 312.14 mph in her Advance Auto Parts dragster.
Houston marks the third JFR team double-up win in the nitro categories, all earned by Brittany Force and bother-in-law Robert Hight. The first win came in 2016 in Gainesville and the second the following year in Dallas. In 2017, the pair both went on to win world championships in their respective categories for John Force Racing. Both Nitro classes will return to action in at the NGK Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway near Charlotte, N.C. April 26-28.