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Aug 27, 2014 - 06:23 AM
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2014 NHRA: Force Ready To Race For Fifth NHRA U.S. Nationals Victory
Posted by: newsla on Aug 27, 2014 - 06:23 AM
NHRA
2014 NHRA: Force Ready To Race For Fifth NHRA U.S. Nationals Victory


Ask John Force which drag race he holds near and dear to his heart and he’ll quickly reply “Indy”. The 16-time NHRA Mello Yello Champion has visited the winner’s circle at Indianapolis Raceway Park four times in his illustrious career in 1993, 1996, 1998 and 2002 and is ready to drive his 8,000 horsepower Castrol GTX High Mileage Mustang to another victory at this year’s Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals.

 

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“Certain things motivate me, like the history here and all my heroes that raced at the U.S. Nationals, like the Snake (Don Prudhomme) and the Mongoose (Tom McEwen). My sponsors like Castrol, Ford, Mac Tools, Traxxas, Auto Club and Peak also motivate me. Everyone wants to win Indy and it will be an exciting race, as we have the Traxxas Shootout going on,” said John Force.

Over the last 20 seasons, the 65-year-old icon has won 12 specialty races, six of them at Indianapolis, where he won five times in the Big Bud Shootout and once in the U.S. Smokeless Showdown. He won the inaugural Traxxas Nitro Shootout at Dallas, Texas after it was postponed by rain at Indy back in 2012. This year, John Force is ready to mix things up with his Castrol GTX High Mileage Mustang at this year’s event.

“I’m excited about the Traxxas Shootout. I think we can play, as we got a fast hot rod. Jimmy Prock (crew chief) will be swinging for the fences. Anyone we face will be tough, so we’ll just go out and do what we do,” said John Force.

With the Funny Car final from Brainerd being postponed due to rain delay two weeks ago, fans at this year’s Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals will get an added bonus. The final will be held at Indianapolis during the second qualifying session on Saturday. John Force will be racing in his fifth consecutive final-round appearance of the season and will once again be trying to defeat longtime rival Ron Capps.

“Me and Ron Capps have some unfinished business from Brainerd, so the fans will have some fun watching us race each in the finals on Saturday. I’m really looking forward to it as he’s a tough racer,” said John Force.

Although unofficial until completion of the Brainerd event, John Force also took over the Funny Car points lead from teammate and son-in-law Robert Hight. With Force’s semifinal win over Tommy Johnson Jr., he leads Robert Hight by 18 points.

After securing his spot in the ever critical Countdown to the Championship during last month’s NHRA Sonoma Nationals, John Force was able to breathe a little easier heading into the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals. However, as team owner, Force never slows down for one moment. With three other drivers rounding out his camp, the patriarch of this racing dynasty makes sure they all make the playoffs, as he knows how important it is to their sponsors.

During last year’s Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, John Force lost in the quarter-finals to Del Worsham, and it was teammate Robert Hight that drove his Castrol Auto Club Mustang to a final round victory. A jubilant Force was proud of his team and what they accomplished that day.

“Winning Indy six years in a row was great. Robert has three Indy wins, I have four and this is three wins in a row for Mike Neff. These guys are the future of this team, along with Courtney and Brittany and Ashley who has won this race twice in a row. You really have to just love Indy and how special it is,” said John Force.

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