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John Force Goes BOOM In Qualifying, Shredding The Body Of His Funny Car.

The 2018 NHRA season made it through one whole round of qualifying before things ...

The 2018 NHRA season made it through one whole round of qualifying before things things took an explosive turn for one of the greats of the sport.

At the season-opening Lucas Oil NHRA Winternationals, sixteen time funny car world champion John Force suffered an engine explosion as he neared the finish line at Auto Club Raceway. The force of the explosion – pardon the unavoidable pun – caused the Peak Automotive Chevrolet Camaro body to disintegrate is spectacular fashion. The iconic driver relied on his decades of experience behind the wheel to keep the car off the wall and upright despite the chaos of the moment, showing that at 68 years young, Force has lost nothing when it comes to reigning in one of these monsters, even after the engine explodes literally feet in front of him.

It’s not immediately clear from the video, captured in spectacular slow motion by the FOX Sports cameras, what caused the explosion, but you can see the brief fireball erupt, tearing away the composite body and causing the back half of it to rip away from the chassis. It’s hard to grasp the forces at play in this kind of situation, but the car itself was traveling approximately 300 MPH when the explosion took place, to just the pressure from the air passing over the body caused it to tear away like wrapping paper.

World class photographer Mark Rebilas was in position at the top end of the track to capture the incident, relying on his years of experience and uncanny knack for being in the right place at the right time to capture this stunning photo of the carnage as it unfolded. His photo revealed in great detail the amount of damage the body suffered, as you can see a large number of small pieces as well as the large main section the fell to the track as the chassis itself continued downtrack.

Force would walk away with no signs of injury and should be back on track today for the final two qualifying sessions.

 

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