Two-time and reigning NHRA Camping World Top Fuel world champion Brittany Force and her Monster Energy / Flav-R-Pac Chevrolet Camaro SS team enter this weekend’s Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway with the same intensity that won them the 2022 championship.
“This Monster Energy / Flav-R-Pac team is pumped coming into the 2023 season after finishing so strong and winning a championship together. We are looking forward to seeing what we can do this season,” Force said. “Last season we had five wins and we want to go beyond that. We want more wins. We’d like to set more track records, but the ultimate game plan is to win another championship for this team.”
Now with a No. 1 emblazoned on the Monster Energy dragster, Force, the only woman other than Shirley Muldowney to have won the series title in NHRA’s signature category, returns to a track forever embedded in her history. Force tallied her first professional win at Gainesville Raceway in 2016 when she doubled up for victory with teammate Robert Hight. It was also the first professional nitro sweep for John Force Racing.
“Gainesville is definitely a special place for me. I’ve been coming here since I was a kid watching my dad and then Ashley race,” Force said. “My first win in a Top Fuel car was here in 2016. Again, it’s a special place, I love it here, it’s the Gatornationals, it’s just a big one. It’s one of the races I remember as a kid that seemed so prestigious. It drew in a huge crowd, and it had so much momentum and excitement behind it. It is one you never want to miss.”
Force set the current Gainesville Raceway track ET record (3.680 seconds on March 15, 2019) when she and Hight were No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the 2019 Gatornationals and set the track speed record (337.75mph) in her most recent appearance (March 12, 2022).
This weekend will also play host to the second annual Pep Boys NHRA All-Star Callout featuring eight of Top Fuel’s most competitive drivers. Force is the top seed and will pick her first-round opponent in a bid to win her first all-star race after finishing runner-up in a final round contested at Indianapolis during the U.S. Nationals after the event was rained out in Gainesville, Fla.
“After coming out early and testing for a total of six days, we’re pretty confident going into this race weekend and we’re excited for it to be two races in one. It’s the Pep Boys All-Star Call Out, it’s going to be fun,” Force said. “I already kind of had a brief discussion with Grubnic on who we are going to call out, so we already have a game plan in mind. We’ll see how it goes. There’s no good team or driver to call. They’re all going to be tough, that’s why we are all up there together, the eight of us. So, either way, it’s going to be tricky but we are ready for the challenge.”
The Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway, the season-opening event in the 2023 NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series, begins with four qualifying sessions Friday at 2:30 p.m. and 5 p.m., and Saturday at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. with the Pep Boys Call-Out taking place throughout qualifying Saturday. Eliminations on Sunday are slated for 10 a.m. Television coverage of the event begins with a qualifying show Saturday at 11 a.m. ET and a dedicated Pep Boys All-Start Callout show on Sunday at 10:30 a.m. ET on FOX Sports 1 (FS1). Sunday race day action will be at noon ET on FOX Broadcasting Network.