PEAK Coolant and Motor Oil driver John Force:
Progress being made at JFR
Photo credit: Gary Nastase / Auto Imagery
BAYTOWN, Texas (April 23) – The NHRA SpringNationals didn’t go as PEAK Coolant and Motor Oil Funny Car driver John Force expected, but the 16-time Funny Car champion knows progress is being made in the John Force Racing camp.
In Funny Car, Force qualified No. 3 and raced to the second round, while No. 4 qualifier Robert Hight made it to the final round after beating No. 1 qualifier Courtney Force in semifinals.
“I told you John Force Racing was getting better,” John Force said. “Gainesville was a shot to get a win for PEAK and Chevrolet. To have Auto Club in the final and Courtney and Advance in the semis was big, too. We’ve got some work to do on that dragster. We changed the chassis, and it just doesn’t seem to be working. We’re going to stay on it; it’s what we do. The Funny Cars are doing well. Mine dropped a hole; I got whooped.”
Force beat Del Worsham in the first round, coasting to a pass of 4.216 seconds at 220.08 mph while Worsham trailed with a 4.485-second run at 205.51 mph.
Force then left on Jack Beckman in the second round with a .036-second reaction time, but a dropped cylinder pushed Force’s Chevrolet Camaro SS toward the wall, and he was forced to lift in a losing 4.134-second pass at 273.39 mph. Beckman was low of the round, too: 3.897 at 329.18 mph.
But Force, 67, admitted Houston was a learning experience after returning to the mainland from a vacation in Hawaii.
“But I learned something about vacations – it wasn’t the vacation,” Force said. “I didn’t party, I lived in the gym. It’s because I had a five-hour time change. And I didn’t realize it; I couldn’t fall asleep until 2 in the morning and waking up at 6:30 like I always do.
“On Saturday, in the final session, I finally came alive. I got my lights back, I was back on my game – I just got beat today. You learn from things, even at my age.”
Force was on his game Sunday, leaving first on both opponents.
Force quickly returns to the driver’s seat for the NHRA Four-Wide Nationals on April 28-30 at zMax Dragway.