Courtney Force will step away from Funny Car racing, effective immediately, she announced Wednesday. The 13-time race winner will remain involved in NHRA Drag Racing both through supporting her teammates and off-track partnerships but will no longer drive her Advance Auto Parts Chevy Camaro.
“I will be stepping away from my driving duties, effective immediately,” said Force in a statement. “This was a personal choice as I feel I’m ready to see what the next chapter in my life has in store for me, while spending more time with family. I intend to remain involved in the industry I love and continue to work with a few select partners as I go forward in 2019. I am so thankful that I have had the opportunity to have such a successful career at John Force Racing and the privilege of working with so many incredible people while racing against competitors who pushed me to be a better driver.”
Force matched her career-high with four wins in 2018 and finished sixth place in points. The driver wraps up this portion of her career with 12 Nitro Funny Car wins and one Top Alcohol Dragster win. She earned her first Wally in Top Alcohol Dragster in 2009 against Chris Demke and her most recent against her father, John, in Richmond.
“I first have to thank my dad for encouraging me to live out my dream of being a Funny Car driver while getting to compete against him and learn from the best,” she said. “I want to thank my family and my husband, Graham, for their support through the highs and lows and to my team for their undeniable will to win and for always keeping me motivated, confident and safe in my race car.”
Force posted a career best time of 3.815 second and speed of 338.85 mph. She also racked a round-record of 199-154 while going 12-17 in final round appearances.
“Thank you to all of my sponsors from the start of my career with Traxxas and Ford to now with Advance Auto Parts, Chevrolet, Auto Club, PEAK, Monster, PPG and Mac Tools,” she continued. “I’m grateful for all of your support both on and off the track and the opportunity I had to represent your brands with pride.
“Last but not least, to my fans: thank you for all of your support throughout my career. I’m excited to see where this next chapter will take me, and I hope to see you all at the track soon.”