John Force Racing has officially announced its 2019 driver and crew lineups, with Funny Cars driven by John Force and Robert Hight and the Top Fuel dragster of Brittany Force, and a fourth team car, driven by Austin Prock, in contingency for the 2019 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing season.
The team also confirmed that Brian Corradi and Danny Hood, who tuned Courtney Force to four victories and 11 No. 1 qualifiers in her career-best season in 2018, would bring their talents to John Force’s Peak Coolant and Motor Oil Chevrolet Camaro SS following Courtney’s decision to step away from driving this season, and that David Grubnic would be the new crew chief for Brittany’s Force Advance Auto Parts dragster.
"Working with Brian Corradi and son-in-law Dan Hood is exciting for me,” said 16-time world champion John Force, who is already the winningest driver in NHRA history and will be chasing a monumental 150th race win this season. “They, along with Tim Fabrisi, have put a strong team together as proven last year with Courtney making a run for the championship. Even with all of the day-to-day operations of John Force Racing, I’m committed to giving 100 percent. I know what it takes to win a championship and its 100 percent focus. I’m committed to giving that to my new team.”
Brittany Force wrapped up 2018 fifth in the Top Fuel points standings after opening the season with a wreck that destroyed her dragster. She went on to win the SpringNationals in Houston and secured No. 1 qualifiers at the Four-Wide Nationals in Charlotte, N.C., during the spring and the Carolina Nationals in the fall. Grubnic began his NHRA career as a Top Fuel pilot where he earned three event victories, 10 No. 1 qualifiers, and finished as high as fourth in the points standings. He made the switch from driver to tuner in 2015 and developed a winning combination that landed him a third-place finish as a tuner in 2018.
“I’m really excited about joining John Force Racing,” Grubnic said. “Everyone wants the chance to get to tune for a legendary team and I’m grateful for the opportunity. I’m sure there will be a bit of a learning curve for this new Advance Auto Parts team, but Brittany is a championship driver and this team is ready to put in the work to go rounds, get wins and chase another championship for JFR. It will be a fun year, but it will also take a lot of hard work and dedication. I’m looking forward to getting to the race track and fine tuning what we’ve been putting together in the off-season.”
Hight, president of John Force Racing and a two-time world champion, will continue to drive the Auto Club of Southern California Chevrolet Camaro SS with his tandem of Jimmy Prock as crew chief and Chris Cunningham as assistant. The trio picked up a world championship in 2017 and in 2018 won four races in seven final rounds on their way to finishing second in the points standings.
In addition to their full-time line-up, next generation driver Austin Prock, the son of Hight’s crew chief, will continue the developmental process with full intentions of competing in the 2019 season.
“My operation fully functions with a four-car team, with the chassis shop, machine shop and engine program, it makes it all make sense,” said John Force. “We will find a partnership to run this fourth car. Chasing sponsorships is no different than chasing a championship, you work on it 24/7.”
Prock earned his nitro Funny Car license in 2018 and will be getting his Top Fuel dragster license as well. John Force Racing hasn’t committed to which direction -- Top Fuel or Funny Car -- that Prock will go, and will be building his team through the start of the year. Helping in his growth as a driver are crew chiefs Jon Schaffer and Ronnie Thompson.
“The 2019 season is going to be an exciting one for John Force Racing,” said Hight. “We have some new faces in the pits, some new sponsors, but the same drive and determination that we’ve always had. We’re going after race wins and championships and we have the right people, partners and parts to make that happen. It’s been a long off-season and we’re ready to go racing.”