John Force takes PEAK Coolant & Motor Oil Camaro to quarterfinals at AAA Texas FallNationals

John Force took his PEAK Coolant & Motor Oil Chevrolet Camaro SS to the quarterfinals of Sunday’s AAA Texas NHRA FallNationals at Texas Motorplex, a disappointing finish for the 16-time championship-winning driver. But victories by two of his drivers in Top Fuel and Funny Car gave him solace as team owner.
The No. 10 qualifier, Force escaped with a first-round win after smoking his tires, only to mash the throttle and push the car past No. 7 Tommy Johnson Jr. before the finish. However, he was early on the throttle in the second-round matchup against Ron Capps, and was credited with a red-light disqualification.
Force was first off the light against Johnson, but smoked the tires about 300 feet down the track. Never one to quit, the 16-time NHRA Funny Car champion kept his foot into it, while Johnson’s tires started spinning loose as well. Force’s car then experienced a big backfire, but amazingly the car stayed together and continued to pick up momentum. That resulted in Force passing Johnson just before the finish and winning by about 17 feet, keeping Force in contention for another title.
The Funny Car quarterfinals were delayed after a large accident involving Top Fuel driver Steve Torrence, who walked about after his car hit the wall and drifted across the track into the other wall. Torrence eventually brought a backup car out, where he lost to Force’s daughter, Brittany Force.
John Force staged deep, but .076 seconds before the Christmas tree light blinked green, Force was on the throttle. He knew it immediately, and coasted to the finish, while Capps moved on and eventually finished runner-up to Force’s teammate, Robert Hight.
Despite the early exit, Force remained sixth in the Funny Car standings. In addition to Hight’s victory in Funny Car in the AAA Texas Chevrolet Camaro SS, Force’s daughter, Brittany Force, took the Monster Energy dragster to victory in Top Fuel.
“Any time you can you can win in two categories – Top Fuel and Funny Car – we’ve done our job as a team for Chevrolet and our sponsors,” said Force, who has won seven times as a driver at Dallas and 14 times as an owner. “I couldn’t get the job done, but I trained these guys well. They’ve learned and they are teaching me now. They turned this thing around and made it a great day. Courtney (Force) is not done and I’m not done either.”
The penultimate round of the 2017 season is the NHRA Nationals, which take place Oct. 27-29 at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
4-Second Reads:
  • Best Qualifying Effort: 3.957 seconds/327.90 mph (Round 3, Qualified No. 10)
  • Elimination Round 1 (Left Lane): 4.413 seconds/234.61 seconds (RT – .048 seconds), def. No. 7 Tommy Johnson Jr., 4.467 seconds/192.44 mph (RT – .053 seconds); smoked the tires at about 300 feet, but stayed on the throttle after Johnson also smoked tires, and despite car backfiring passed Johnson before the finish to win; vs. Johnson – now 34-14 all-time; 3-2 this season; 3-1 at Dallas
  • Elimination Round 2 (Quarterfinals, Right Lane): Red Light, 13.230 seconds/65.37 mph (RT – -.076 seconds), lost to No. 2 Ron Capps, 3.921 seconds/329.10 mph (RT – .057 seconds); goes early and back off soon after; vs. Capps – now 55-35 all-time; 0-3 this season; 5-3 at Dallas
  • Now 1,284-564 (1,848 rounds) all-time in elimination rounds (.695)
  • Now 19-19 (38 rounds) all-time in elimination rounds after qualifying No. 10 (.500)
  • Now 72-28 (100 rounds) all-time in elimination rounds at Dallas (.720)
  • Now 21-21 (42 rounds) this season in elimination rounds (.500)
  • Funny Car Points Standings: 1. Ron Capps 2495; 2. Robert Hight 2471; 3. Courtney Force 2324; 4. Jack Beckman 2309; 5. Matt Hagan 2269; 6. John Force 2252.

John Force Racing PR/Photo Gary Nastase and Auto Imagery

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