POMONA, Calif. (Febuary 05, 2020) – After clinching their third Funny Car world championship at last year’s Auto Club NHRA Finals, Robert Hight and the Automobile Club of Southern California Chevrolet Camaro SS team are entering the 2020 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Season on a high note.
The crewman turned Funny Car champ wrapped up the 2019 season with a career-best six race victories, including a milestone 50th win at the Sonoma Nationals, three runner-up finishes and eight No. 1 qualifiers that led to taking home the white hat for a third time in his 15-year career. Now, as he makes his way to Auto Club Raceway at Pomona to kick-off his 16th season, he’ll be competing to maintain his dominance over the Funny Car class. After an impressive performance at testing last week at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, there’s little doubt he’s got the team to beat.
Throughout the three-day test session, Hight and the Auto Club crew tuned by Jimmy Prock and Chris Cunningham, laid down a handful of impressive passes including a 3.844-second pass at 330.12 mph on Thursday and a 3.839-second pass at 334.40 mph on Friday to be quickest of the Funny Car pack on both days.
“We had a good race car at testing. It felt really good to be back in the driver’s seat and has me excited about the 2020 season. Jimmy Prock, Chris Cunningham, the Auto Club guys and myself, we’re all ready to get back at it and chase down another championship,” said Hight who was the points leader and regular season champion last year. “We put in the work and we’re going to do the same this time around, so I’m looking forward to what this team is capable of.”
At the 2019 Winternationals, Hight powered his 11,000-horsepower Chevy Camaro SS to the No. 1 qualifier spot and went onto win the event for the fourth time in his career.
“I always love getting back to Pomona. It’s a home race for most of us at John Force Racing and it just feels good to start the season there. Last year this Auto Club team won the race and it was an awesome way to begin 2019, so I’m hoping we can start this season off the same way,” said Hight. “We all have the same mentality we did last year and are hoping for the best. It’ll be good to get back out there with Auto Club too and all our sponsors.”
The start to the 2020 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series Season begins with qualifying at the Lucas Oil Winternationals presented by ProtectTheHarvest.com on Friday at 12:45 and 3:15 p.m. Nitro qualifying will continue on Saturday with sessions at 1:30 and 4:00 p.m. Eliminations will begin Sunday at 11 a.m. Catch the action on FOX Sports 1 (FS1) Friday at 6 p.m. ET, Saturday at 7 p.m. ET and Sunday at 5 p.m. ET.
About John Force Racing
John Force Racing, Inc., based in Yorba Linda, Calif., and Brownsburg, Ind., is a professional sports dynasty, one that has earned 21 NHRA championships and claimed 280 professional victories in Funny Car (269) and Top Fuel (11). Led by team owner and driver John Force, a 16-time Funny Car world champion, 1996 Driver of the Year for all of American motor racing, 2011 International Motorsports Hall of Fame inductee, and driver of the PEAK Coolant and Motor Oil Chevrolet Camaro SS Funny Car, JFR is additionally comprised of Auto Club of Southern California Chevrolet Camaro SS driver Robert Hight, 2019, 2017 and 2009 Funny Car world champion and 2005 Auto Club Road to the Future Award winner (NHRA’s Rookie of the Year); Top Fuel driver Brittany Force, 2017 Top Fuel world champion and 2013 Auto Club Road to the Future Award winner; and Montana Brand / Rocky Mountain Twist driver Austin Prock, 2019 Auto Club Road to the Future Award winner.
For more information, please visit www.johnforceracing.com.
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Photo Credit: Gary Nastase, Auto Imagery, Auto Club Camaro: Ron Lewis, driver photo: NHRA