Photo courtesy John Force Racing

NHRA: Brittany Force released from hospital, to recuperate at home for next week

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Reigning NHRA Top Fuel champion Brittany Force, who was involved in a hard lateral crash during Sunday’s first round of eliminations in the season-opening Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals, was released from a hospital on Monday after spending a night for observation and additional tests.

According to a team media release issued Monday afternoon, Force suffered no lingering effects from the hard lateral impact except overall lingering soreness. Her Top Fuel dragster crossed into the opposite line and slammed sideways into the hard wall, bounced off, spun, slid back to the right lane on its side and eventually landed wheels up after sliding through the finish line area.

Force, 31, suffered no major internal injuries although she does have minor lung bruising. She was transported by ambulance after the wreck from Auto Club Raceway to a local Pomona, California hospital where she was held overnight as a precaution.

A CT scan was negative and an MRI showed findings from previous injuries.

The team said Force, daughter of 16-time NHRA Funny Car champ John Force, will continue to recuperate for the next week at her home in Yorba Linda, California.

The next NHRA national event is Feb. 23-25 in suburban Phoenix. Brittany Force is expected to take part in that event.

NHRA: Brittany Force cleared to race this weekend in Phoenix after bad wreck 2 weeks ago

Photo: John Force Racing
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Drag racing is a Force family tradition. So, too, is not keeping a Force family member down.

Just 12 days after the most serious wreck of her six-year drag racing career, Brittany Force and John Force Racing announced late Thursday afternoon that the defending 2017 NHRA Top Fuel champion has been medically cleared and will indeed race in this weekend’s NHRA Arizona Nationals at Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in suburban Phoenix, Arizona.

“I flew into Phoenix early this (Thursday) morning and headed straight out to the race track to meet up with my team,” Force said. “I suited up and got belted back into my car that I ran all last season.

“It honestly felt good to be strapped back in and I was surprised how comfortable I was. I’m looking forward to getting back in my car tomorrow (Friday’s first two rounds of qualifying) and getting back in the swing of things with my guys.”

The 31-year-old Force, one of four daughters of 16-time NHRA Funny Car champ John Force, suffered a concussion and bruising after the hard crash she was involved in on February 11 in the first round of eliminations of the season-opening NHRA Lucas Oil Winternationals in Pomona, California.

Shortly after leaving the starting line in a race vs. Terry Haddock, Force’s dragster crossed from the right to left lanes, impacted the retaining wall with a very hard lateral crash, bounced off, spun, went on its side and briefly caught fire after crossing the finish line wheels-up.

While she is still recovering from the bruising, Force feels strong enough to get back behind the wheel. Getting back in the race car could be the best medicine of all, since she has three runner-up finishes in Phoenix, including back-to-back second-place showings in both the 2016 and 2017 national events.

The three-day event kicks off Friday with qualifying rounds at 4 and 6:30 p.m. ET, the same times as Saturday’s qualifying. Final eliminations begin at 1 p.m. ET Sunday.