John Force Racing made a statement this weekend at the 32nd annual Mopar Express Lane NHRA SpringNationals presented by Pennzoil when it claimed both nitro category victories, with Brittany Force winning in Top Fuel and Robert Hight winning in Funny Car on Sunday at Houston Raceway.
That statement? The crews at JFR are ready to play ball this year during the 2019 Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season.
B. Force entered race day qualified No. 1 with hopes to repeat her win at Houston from a year ago. On her way to victory in her Advance Auto Parts dragster, she took out Top Fuel racers Cameron Ferre, Doug Kalitta, Clay Millican and, finally, three-time world champion Antron Brown in the final with her lap of 3.749s at 302.14 mph.
“All of John Force Racing was on a mission this morning,” B. Force said. “My dad and I were No. 1 — the first time father and daughter have ever qualified No. 1 at an event. That’s something very special my dad and I will share.
“We were looking for a win, but to be able to do it with Robert Hight by my side in that Auto Club car, that’s pretty awesome.”
In the Funny Car ranks, Hight picked up his third victory of the 2019 season in his AAA Texas Chevrolet Camaro SS Funny Car and his third career win at Houston. He defeated Jonnie Lindberg, 2018 Funny Car champ J.R. Todd, JFR owner and No. 1 qualifier John Force, and finally Matt Hagan in the final with a lap of 3.941 at 310.84.
“I’m proud of [my team]; never disbelieved in them,” Hight said. “That’s why we have three wins already this season because they’re so good. Down at the other end, they said, ‘How do you keep your team in check?’ Really, it’s the other way around. They keep me in check. I’ve never seen a more focused group of individuals. They keep their heads down, work hard, don’t do a lot of talking and we got the job done.
“Brittany and I — this is the third time we’ve gotten to double-up. We seem to do really well together in these circumstances. It was really cool to be down there when she made the [turn off] and throw a bunch of Mello Yello on her car.”
Houston marks the third JFR team double-up win in the nitro categories, all earned by B. Force and Hight. The first came in 2016 in Gainesville and the second in 2017 in Dallas, the year the pair both went on to win championships in their respective categories.
The Mello Yello Drag Racing Series will have a weekend off before traveling to zMAX Dragway near Charlotte, N.C. for the NGK Spark Plugs NHRA Four-Wide Nationals, April 26-28.