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NHRA Funny Car Champion John Force, Awakes From 300-MPH Crash Injuries

A Miraculous Recovery

Legendary NHRA Funny Car driver John Force, who holds 16 championships, has awakened from a medically induced coma. Force spent five days in this state as doctors monitored him for potential brain injuries after a terrifying 300-mph crash during the NHRA Virginia Nationals. The 75-year-old driver’s recovery journey is expected to be lengthy, as he also sustained other injuries from the violent collision with both concrete barriers.

Post Via Drag Illustrated

Signs of Improvement

NHRA funny car driver John Force during the Thunder Valley Nationals at Bristol Dragway on June 9© Mark J Rebilas USA TODAY Sports

Force’s condition started to improve significantly after he was moved to the neuro ICU a few days ago. He is now responding to commands, such as recognizing his name and identifying family members, although he is facing common challenges associated with waking up from this type of care. This incredible survival story adds another chapter to Force’s career, which has been marked by intense and dangerous accidents.

A Storied Career

John Force began his professional racing career in 1978, quickly rising to become the most prominent figure in drag racing. Over the decades, he has helped elevate the sport to new heights. With 157 wins under his belt, Force’s latest victory came just a month ago during the New England Nationals at New England Dragway in Epping, New Hampshire.

Family by His Side

As Force continues to recover, his daughters and wife remain by his bedside, providing much-needed support. Meanwhile, Austin Prock, considered the heir apparent to Force’s funny car throne, is flying the John Force Racing flag at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals at Summit Motorsports Park in Ohio. Prock has proven his prowess by becoming the number one qualifier and setting a new track record with a blistering 3.853-second run. He also captured the Mission Foods #2Fast2Tasty shootout win over Bob Tasca III, solidifying his position at the top of the qualifying sheet.

The Incident Under Investigation

The NHRA is currently investigating the accident that occurred in Virginia. Modern nitro-burning Funny Cars are equipped with several safety devices designed to deploy parachutes in the event of an explosion, like the one Force experienced during the opening round of competition. The high-speed collision with the retaining wall has raised questions among experts and fans about why the parachutes did not deploy to help slow down Force’s Peak Performance-sponsored Chevrolet Camaro Funny Car.

Advancements in Safety

The NHRA technical and engineering staff have made significant strides in safety over the last 70-plus years of NHRA drag racing. This dedication to innovation and implementation of new safety equipment continues to protect drivers in the sport. The findings from Force’s accident are expected to lead to further advancements, ensuring even greater safety for racers in the future.

Looking Ahead

John Force’s journey to recovery will be long and challenging, but his resilience and determination have already begun to shine through. His family, fans, and the entire NHRA community continue to rally around him, offering their support and well-wishes. As Austin Prock carries the torch for John Force Racing, the legacy of John Force continues to inspire and motivate those within the sport.

In conclusion, John Force’s story is one of remarkable strength and perseverance. Despite the severe injuries and the dangers of the sport, he has shown time and again that he is a true champion. As he embarks on this recovery journey, the world of drag racing watches with hope and admiration, eager to see the legendary driver back on his feet.