| What: Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationalsWhen: Friday, May 21-Sunday, May 23Where: Houston Raceway Park in Baytown, TexasTV: FS1 will telecast eliminations at 6 p.m. ET May 23 Chevrolet heads to Houston with momentum as big as Texas|
John Force Racing brings 16 victories into fifth race of season
DETROIT (May 19, 2021) – There was an imperceptible difference in John Force’s exuberance following his victory May 16 in the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) four-wide event at zMAX Dragway and his win in the inaugural event in 2010.
A victory, whether a week or 11 years apart, is to be celebrated.“Wow! I pulled it off,” said Force as he exited the PEAK/BlueDEF Chevrolet Camaro SS.
Force, who a day earlier claimed his 161st career top qualifier honor, swept the three rounds of eliminations to earn his 152nd career victory. Combined with a runner-up finish in the NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series event two weeks earlier at Atlanta Dragway, Force has risen to third in the Funny Car standings heading into the Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil at Houston Raceway Park.
“Not bad at all for an old man,” deadpanned the 72-year-old hall of famer “I’m excited, we’re off to a great start. I’ve got some luck on my side, heck I’m lucky to have a job.”
Force’s victory was the 142nd for Chevrolet in NHRA Funny Car competition, including 62 with the Camaro body.
“We’re here, we’re racing well, I’ve got a good car thanks to my team and we’re competing with these tough kids out here,” Force added. “My team is doing their job and I’m halfway doing mine, give me a good car and we’re going to win some races. We’re doing just that.”
Force has a record seven wins at Houston Raceway Park, and John Force Racing has 16 victories in the SpringNationals.
Teammate Robert Hight, driver of the Auto Club of Southern California Camaro SS, has contributed to that team success with three wins, including in 2005 in his fourth Funny Car race. He’s made finals appearances in the past three appearances at Houston and set the track Funny Car record of 331.77 mph in 2017.
“We’ll have this Chevy running well and we’ll be able to repeat some of that success this weekend and move up in the points,” Hight said.John Force Racing’s Brittany Force reset the zMAX Dragway elapsed time and speed records in the Flav-R-Pac Chevrolet dragster and picked up her second No. 1 qualifier this season. She went on to a runner-up finish in the final quad.
“It’s been a good start to the season for this Monster Energy / Flav-R-Pac team. We’re just four races in and getting back in the groove of things after a whole season away,” said Force, who won in Houston in 2018 and ‘19. “This is the same team I had in 2019 and every single one of them returned. They stood by John Force Racing, and I think that speaks highly of their character, it shows how loyal they are and their commitment to John Force Racing. Our hard work is paying off but we want more, we’re looking for wins and ultimately to go after that championship.”
KB Racing’s Dallas Glenn outdueled Mason McGaha in the Pro Stock final to score his first victory. Greg Anderson, driving the HendrickCars.com Chevrolet Camaro SS, registered his fourth consecutive No. 1 qualifier and 110th of his career.
In the 2020 event, which was postponed to October because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Aaron Stanfield earned his first Pro Stock victory in his Camaro SS.The event will also feature the second Constant Aviation NHRA Factory Stock Showdown of the season. Stanfield won the opener at Gainesville in the Janac Brothers Chevrolet COPO Camaro.
FS1 will telecast eliminations at 6 p.m. ET May 23.
CHEVROLET FROM THE COCKPIT
BRITTANY FORCE, JOHN FORCE RACING, MONSTER ENERGY/FLAV-R-PAC CHEVROLET DRAGSTER (No. 1 qualifier in Las Vegas and Charlotte four-wide events; runner-up in last event; set both ends of track record):“We’ve had some luck over the years in Houston. We won back-to-back in 2018 and 2019. I’m ready to go from Charlotte right into Houston. These back-to-back races keep me as a driver, my crew chiefs and my whole team on our game. We made a lot of improvement in Charlotte and we’re looking to capitalize this weekend with a win.”
JOHN FORCE, JOHN FORCE RACING, PEAK/BLUEDEF PLATINUM CHEVROLET CAMARO SS (winner and runner-up in past two races; No. 1 qualifier in Charlotte four-wide; third in points): “Houston has treated John Force Racing well. I’ve had some wins there so has Robert Hight in that Auto Club Chevy and Brittany with Monster Energy. I’ve got something good going with this PEAK / BlueDEF team and we’re going to keep it going. Take care of business during qualifying and set us up right for race day to go rounds and hopefully get in that winner’s circle again.”
ROBERT HIGHT, JOHN FORCE RACING, AUTO CLUB OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA CHEVROLET CAMARO SS (No. 1 qualifier in Las Vegas four-wide; runner-up in season opener): “We knew there was an issue, and we just needed the time to figure it out. Once (crew chiefs) Jimmy (Prock) and Chris (Cunningham) identified what they thought it was, we didn’t waste any time working to fix it. These AAA guys worked hard on Monday and we’re happy. It’ll be good to go into Houston knowing we’re going to be making solid runs and doing what we know how to do, and that’s win races.”
GREG ANDERSON, KB RACING, HENDRICKCARS.COM CHEVROLET CAMARO SS (winner in two of the four races; No. 1 qualifier in all four events; points leader): “KB definitely is on a roll and has several team cars that are capable of winning every week. My personal team goals is to make amends for the mistake I made last weekend. I feel like I let one slip away. There were a lot of positives and setting up for a perfect weekend and I dropped the ball. I have some unfinished business this weekend. Thank goodness Dallas (Glenn) was there to pick up the ball.”
TROY COUGHLIN JR., ELITE MOTORSPORTS, JEGS.COM/ELITEMOTORSPORTS CHEVROLET CAMARO SS (runner-up in season opener; transferred to final quad at Charlotte): “We’ve been to two finals in the first four races of the year so we obviously have a car that can win. We just need to get it done. What we’ve seen every race is some very stacked fields. All the cars from top-to-bottom are running extremely close times. That puts a premium on the drivers being as close to perfect as possible when they execute a run, even in qualifying. It’s really how drag racing should be, where anyone can win at any time.”
DALLAS GLENN, KB RACING, RAD TORQUE SYSTEMS CHEVROLET CAMARO SS (winner of Charlotte four-wide): “I think Pro Stock is extremely healthy. Pretty much half the field is under the age of 35. There’s a lot of young guns driving right now, and it’s absolutely tough out there. Anybody in the top 16 can win a race out there. Anything can happen right now. You know you’re going to have to be good on the tree.”