John Force remains in ICU after horrific Funny Car crash, team says


John Force, the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) great who was involved in a horrific crash Sunday afternoon at the Virginia Nationals, remained in the ICU on Monday, his team said.

John Force Racing released the update after “catastrophic engine failure” led to his Funny Car explosion and subsequent crash into two separate guard walls.

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NHRA Funny Car driver John Force looks on during qualifying for the Thunder Valley Nationals at Bristol Dragway in Bristol, Tennessee, on June 7, 2024. (Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)

“Attending doctors purposely were moving slowly in assessing the extent of the injuries to the Hall of Fame owner and driver because of the intensity of the impact,” the race team said in a statement. “Medical staff will not provide a treatment and recovery timetable until a total evaluation is completed.”

Force’s wife and four daughters joined him at the hospital.

“Updates on the 157-time tour winner’s condition will be released at the discretion of the medical staff.”

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NHRA Funny Car driver John Force takes off during qualifying for the NHRA Finals at In-N-Out Burger Pomona Dragstrip in Pomona, California, on Nov. 11, 2023. (Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)

His team said Sunday that Force was “conscious and alert” in the immediate aftermath of the wreck when safety personnel rushed to his side.

Force, 75, was in his Funny Car riding down the track, like he had done thousands of times before, when his engine exploded, causing him to veer across the centerline and into the wall. His vehicle crossed back over the line and hit the guard wall again.

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NHRA Funny Car driver John Force with daughter Brittany Force during the Route 66 Nationals at Route 66 Raceway in Joliet, Illinois, on May 18, 2024. (Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)

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John Force Racing described his vehicle as having “catastrophic engine failure” after he crossed the finish line at 302 mph.

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