While this is the inaugural year for the Traxxas Shootout it is not the first time John Force Racing will be looking for bonus money success at the Mac Tools US Nationals. Eight times John Force Racing has hoisted the bonus race trophy and cash whether it was the Big Bud Shootout or the Skoal Showdown. This year all four JFR drivers will be battling three Don Schumacher teams (Ron Capps, Johnny Gray and Jack Beckman) and Jeff Arend from Kalitta Racing for the $100,000 top prize on Sunday, September 3rd. Today rookie sensation Courtney Force won the lottery for the final spot in the Traxxas Nitro Shootout at Monument Circle in downtown Indianapolis. The driver of the Traxxas Ford Mustang garnered 63% of the fan vote leading up to the lottery with the other eligible Funny Car drivers.
“This was awesome. I am so excited to make the Traxxas Nitro Shootout. I want to thank my fans and all my sponsors Traxxas, Castrol, Auto Club, Ford, BrandSource, Mac Tools, Weld Racing, and Lionel/NASCAR for their support over the past week. I was nervous during the lottery because every driver had ping pong balls in the hopper. It was anyone’s lottery to win and I am just thankful my ping pong ball popped out,” said Courtney Force, the winner of the Seattle Northwest NHRA Nationals.
Courtney Force will join her father John Force, a six-time Funny Car bonus race winner, along with Robert Hight and Mike Neff. Three times a JFR driver has won the bonus race and then gone on to double up in the U.S. Nationals. Force doubled in both 1993 and 1996 and Gary Densham did so in 2004.
JFR team record in the Shootout/Showdown is 54-35. The team has won $1,677,500 in Shootout/Showdown bonus money. John Force has earned $1,083,500 himself.
“This is going to be a battle and I am glad I have all four of my drivers in the fight. Robert Hight and Mike Neff have been doing great this season and my Castrol hot rod has been coming around these last couple of races. I am excited my daughter Courtney won the fan vote and the lottery to get her shot at this Traxxas money with her Traxxas Ford Mustang. It will be a great race and I want to thank Mike Jenkins and Traxxas for giving the Funny Car and Top Fuel guys this bonus race,” said John Force.
The first round match-ups for the Traxxas Shootout include three classic JFR vs. DSR match-ups along with No. 2 qualifier Robert Hight taking on Kalitta Racing’s Jeff Arend, the No. 7 qualifier.
2012 Traxxas Shootout Bracket
1. Ron Capps vs. No. 8 Courtney Force
2. Robert Hight vs. No. 7 Jeff Arend
3. Jack Beckman vs. No. 6 John Force
4. Johnny Gray vs. No. 5 Mike Neff