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John Force Racing News

October 28, 2014
JFR READY FOR COMPETITION IN LAS VEGAS AT TOYOTA NATIONALS
 

FULL STEAM AHEAD FOR FORCE ROLLING INTO VEGAS




LAS VEGAS (October 28, 2014) --- With only two NHRA national events remaining this season, John Force will be going at full speed and it’s pedal to the metal when he gets strapped into this 8000 horsepower Castrol GTX High Mileage Mustang during this weekend’s 14th annual NHRA Toyota Nationals. After getting bumped from the top spot by arch rival Matt Hagan earlier this month in Reading, PA, the 16-time NHRA Mello Yello champ has not lost focus despite some recent changes and announcements within his racing dynasty. When it comes time for Sunday’s eliminations, Force won’t be glancing in the rearview mirror, but rather will be looking right down the groove of The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.


“I don't want to go to Vegas and have to spend my days there explaining to the media what's taking place. I don't want to have to do it at the final race at Pomona. We'll be making announcements at Las Vegas. We'll be making announcements in SEMA and right on through the winter, right up till opening day at Pomona,” he said.


“Financially, I even dipped into my savings like I've done before, my wife and I, two and a half million dollars. With that, I have the budget if no more sponsors come onboard, but I've got calls this morning and yesterday. Things are looking good. I hope not to have to invest that money, but I will if I have to. That way, my four teams can race. I have a love and passion for NHRA. I feel I owe NHRA. I owe the sponsors, and I owe the fans to race,” said John Force.

With the recent departure of crew chief Jimmy Prock, Force is undaunted in his quest for his 17th NHRA Funny Car title. At a time when most drivers and team owners would be rattled, especially with only two races left in the 2014 NHRA Mello Yello Countdown to the Championship, it’s business as usual for Force and the Castrol GTX High Mileage team.


“I know it's in the middle of the Countdown, and you think I'm committing suicide, but I'm not, I race from the heart. I'm about principle, I'm about camaraderie, and I’m about loyalty. If a man's heart is not here with me, his job is to protect his family, he's got to do what he's got to do, and John Force has got to do what he's got to do,” said John Force.


This speed bump in the John Force Racing organization will not cause the winningest driver in NHRA history to loose traction, spin the tires and get out of the groove. If anything, Force will rally his team and he’s the most ardent cheerleader and motivator, as this is not the first time he’s faced challenges in running a competitive Funny Car team.


“I have to make a decision because I'm not racing for this championship. I'm racing for this championship and the next 20 years. Right now, I've got to start building a team. Why wait till Pomona to start building a team? I'm going to start tomorrow. The outcome will be what it is. But at least I know where I'm going. I couldn't wait any longer. Jimmy, we shook hands, he walked out and understood; I think he understood what I was doing,” said John Force.


With Force’s runner-up early this month at the Chevrolet Performance U.S. Nationals, his 10th final round appearance this season, including three wins (NHRA Winternationals, Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals, NHRA Northwest Nationals), John Force has a slight lead in the NHRA Mello Yello Countdown chase with 2344 points over teammate Courtney Force, who’s right there in second place with 2314 points. John Force wants nothing more than to win his 17th NHRA Mello Yello Funny Car championship and with his drive and attitude, he could ultimately rewrite the NHRA history books once again.



About Castrol

BP Lubricants USA Inc. markets premium lubricants and business–building programs directly to independent lube operators, service providers, new car dealers and leading retailers. Our leadership brands include Castrol® GTX® – a premium conventional motor oil; Castrol® GTX® High–Mileage™ – a premium synthetic blend designed for vehicles with over 75,000 miles; the Castrol® EDGE ® line of advanced full-synthetic super premium motor oils that offer unsurpassed strength and performance; as well as our range of commercial transport lubricants. To find out more about Castrol products and programs, please call 1–888–CASTROL or log on to www.castrol.com/us.



HIGHT PLANS HOT STREAK BEGINNING THIS WEEKEND IN LAS VEGAS


LAS VEGAS (October 28, 2104) -- In 2009 Robert Hight drove to the winner’s circle at the Toyota NHRA Nationals and essentially wrapped up his first Mello Yello Funny Car championship. He started in the Countdown in 10th place and in two races he overcame a 110 point deficit to move to the top of the standings. This year at the 14th annual Toyota NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway Hight will need some help from Lady Luck to reel in his competition. Sitting in the No. 5 spot in the points and 135 points out of first place Hight knows getting back on top won’t happen in one day but two events might be enough.


“We can’t jump four drivers at one time. Our goal is to be consistent and make moves to get around drivers one at a time. With qualifying bonus points and round wins you can make big moves in one race. We have to make our own luck and the way to do that is to be quick in qualifying and go rounds on Sunday,” said Hight.

In the Spring Hight took the win at The Strip and moved into the points lead for the first time in 2014. It was a position he would hold onto for thirteen consecutive races. Hight and his Auto Club team knows they can make some moves to get back in the top tier for the championship and he also knows he has the crew and crew chief to give him the confidence.


“Working with (crew chief) Mike Neff all season has been great. He gives me a lot of confidence as a driver. When things don’t go our way he doesn’t go off the deep end and panic. He has a great attitude and that attitude goes through the whole team. I feed of that confidence and it makes me a better driver I think. I feel good going into Las Vegas even though the Countdown hasn’t gone the way we expected,” said Hight, a five time winner this season.


Last year Hight lost in the second round at both Las Vegas NHRA races. In the previous races at the Las Vegas track it was feast or famine for Hight and the Auto Club team. The year following his Fall win that sealed the championship he was out in the first round in the Spring and DNQed in the Fall. In 2011 and 2012 he won the Spring Las Vegas race but was out on the first round of the Toyota Nationals. Hight doesn’t attribute this swing in results to pressure.


“You get on hot streaks and you drop off a little bit. Last year John Force got hot on the Countdown and went for five straight finals for the championship. I went to six finals earlier this season and we have five wins. That is the most in this class. If we can pick up two more wins and get some of the people in front of us to go out early we will be right back up at the top. These last two tracks are tracks I feel really good about racing. What happened last year won’t have any effect on how we race this weekend. My focus is on being consistent and giving my team and this Auto Club Ford Mustang 100% of my focus all three days we are on the track,” said Hight.



COURTNEY FORCE READY FOR CHAMPIONSHIP CHASE


LAS Vegas (October 28, 2014) --- Currently sitting third in NHRA Mello Yello series points, Courtney Force is headed to Las Vegas for the14th annual NHRA Toyota Nationals, Oct. 30-Nov. 2 at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway to compete for the No. 1 spot in the Countdown to the Championship. With just two races left, the NHRA star sits just 72 points out of the lead.


“My focus as a driver is to do my job these next two races and put everything I've got into it. I need my full focus and most importantly confidence in myself, my team and my Traxxas Ford Mustang for these next two races,” said Force.


The 2012 Auto Club Road to the Future Rookie of the Year is the current track record holder for time (4.006) and speed (325.37 mph) set on March 29, 2014, at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Her 325.37 mph is the fastest Funny Car speed ever posted at the 1000 foot distance.


“I would love to think about what it would be like to be a Champion,” said Force who is trying to become the first woman to win the Funny Car championship. “But at this time it is still too early to think of what could be and I just need to think of right now and how to do my job the best I can.”


She has won four times this year, twice in the Countdown, standing as the most wins for a woman driver since Angelle Sampey won six times in Pro Stock bike in 2002. She’s had seven career wins since her start in 2012, the most by a woman in the Funny Car class and she has posted top speed nine times this year in her Traxxas Ford Mustang.


“It is definitely surreal looking back at this season and what we have accomplished as a team. I'm so proud of our achievements this year and couldn't have done it without every single member on our team. We've come a long way since just my rookie year, but we've still got a long way to go and a lot to learn,” said Force.

The 26-year-old driver has a great record at The Strip at LVMS. She has never qualified lower than No. 6, qualified in the No. 2 spot resulting in two runner-up finishes in 2013, and started from the pole position last time she was at the track earlier this season.


“I've taken this time to relax after four races in a row, as well as doing sponsor appearances, and am excited and feeling confident going into Las Vegas. We are in a good position and need to keep our focus round by round if we want a shot at this Championship,” said Force.



For Immediate Release

BRITTANY FORCE AND LADY LUCK HEAD TO VEGAS


LAS VEGAS (October 28, 2014) --- The 2014 NHRA schedule was very grueling and intense, but after a long, three week break in the race action, Brittany Force is charged up and ready to don her driving suit, gloves, boots and helmet and get strapped into her 10,000 horsepower Castrol EDGE Dragster. Brittany and her crew are ready to hit The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway during this weekend’s 14th annual NHRA Toyota Nationals. The 2013 NHRA Auto Club Rookie of the Year had struggled a few time this season but her fourth final round appearance at the NHRA Nationals in Reading, Pennsylvania earlier this month once again showed the fans and the racing community that the sophomore Top Fuel driver shouldn’t taking lightly. With only two races remaining and this season, Brittany is still in the hunt for her first Top Fuel win for Castrol EDGE and John Force Racing.


“There’s only two more races left in the Countdown and we are going to head to Vegas with the goal of winning. My guys are pumped and itching to get back to the track. They’ve done a great job and we’re getting better. After our runner up finish in Reading, we wish there wasn’t such a long break between races. We have the right momentum now,” said Brittany Force


Brittany’s familiar black and gold Castrol EDGE Dragster will also be sport a new look when it gets unloaded this Friday in Vegas, as it will feature commemorative Auto Club Road to the Future Rookie Of The Year graphics for the final two races of the season. The stunning design was done in-house by the graphic teams at John Force Racing.


“This rookie car is as much my crews as it is mine, which is why I decided to dedicate it to the entire team. I wanted something completely different but something that has meaning to me and relates to my experience as a rookie driving a Top Fuel dragster. In the beginning of my season JFR put a canopy on my car and the first time I jumped in it I immediately felt like I was in a fighter jet. That feeling is exactly where my idea was inspired from. Working with JFR graphic designer Brandon Baker, we created a military jet theme for my car. The car is silver with a weathered look to it and has the entire teams names listed on the car. It definitely is bad ass and I can't wait to race in Las Vegas!” said Brittany Force.


The Castrol EDGE Dragster design incorporates the look of a jet fighter and Force wanted to go with the patina of a plane that has been in battle. The John Force Racing design team made a template of the entire car and laid out a variety of rivets and “airbrushed” them in Photoshop. All the logos were “weathered” on the car to give it that worn and vintage feel. To give it a metal effect the design team used a brushed metal film and printed directly onto the surface and a matte over laminate look was used to further enhance the airplane theme.


“Winning rookie of the year in 2013 is something I am very proud of. Driving a Top Fuel dragster has definitely been a challenge to adjust to, not only for me but the entire team as well. I feel my rookie team had great success in our first year, going rounds and making it to a semi final round, ending our year strong. Earning Rookie of the Year was a team effort. I don't believe we would have taken that home without every single one of my crew guys and crew chiefs,” said Brittany Force.


As the 2014 NHRA Mello Yello season races to the finish line, it has been one of positive change for the Castrol EDGE team, as Brittany has been in the finals four times and has raced from the top half field on Sunday 12 times, three of those from the No.1 spot. Led by seasoned tuners Todd Smith and Dean “Guido” Antonelli, Brittany knows she has the best crew in the pits. She also knows she’s a capable driver who will give the opponents she faces this weekend a run for their money.



About Castrol

BP Lubricants USA Inc. markets premium lubricants and business–building programs directly to independent lube operators, service providers, new car dealers and leading retailers. Our leadership brands include Castrol® GTX® – a premium conventional motor oil; Castrol® GTX® High–Mileage™ – a premium synthetic blend designed for vehicles with over 75,000 miles; the Castrol® EDGE ® line of advanced full-synthetic super premium motor oils that offer unsurpassed strength and performance; as well as our range of commercial transport lubricants. To find out more about Castrol products and programs, please call 1–888–CASTROL or log on to www.castrol.com/us.

 


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