John Force Renews Canadian Acquaintance

Living legend racer John Force spent last weekend in Canada at Ontario’s St. Thomas Raceway Park as Grand Marshal of the Hardcore Horsepower Shootout.  The exhibition event marked a return to the Canadian facility (formally known as London Motorsports Park) where Force frequented during the mid to late 1990’s….

John Force's travelling road show!

John Force’s travelling road show!

For the 16-time NHRA Funny Car champion it was two days of telling stories, watching racing and reconnecting with Canadian fans. The event opened with a very special event following the national anthem as 5 year old Weslee from Wishes for Weslee met John Force and “raced” down the track in his own Mustang.

“This was an awesome weekend. The fans up here have been great. Getting to meet Weslee was really special. We have done two autograph sessions that both lasted over two hours and I have been having a great time. The Williams family has put on a great show and I am honored to be the Grand Marshal,” said Force.

John Force with guest of honour – Weslee

Over the course of two days Force’s JFR Travelin’ Road Show was the hit of the event. The Road Show featured some of Force’s most famous Funny Cars and showed fans racing highlights as well as special videos produced by John Force Entertainment. Force was thrilled with the professional racing as well as the Jr. Dragster action on track at St. Thomas Motorsports Park.

“I loved seeing the Jr. Dragsters. I can’t wait to get back to California and get Autumn and Robert (Hight) out to the track in her Jr. Dragster. You see these kids out here having so much fun and that is the future of drag racing,” said Force, an excited grandfather.


The inaugural Hardcore Horsepower Shootout event which was co-promoted by Mary Ann and Lyle Williams and Rick Kopp also featured numerous exhibition runs ranging from a Top Fuel dragster, nostalgia Funny Cars, nitro Bikes and Pro Mod vehicles.

“I also loved seeing the guys from England with the Living the Dream car, Rick ‘Hollywood’ Kopp’s AA Funny Car and the Ant Hill Mob Funny Car plus all the Pro Mods and fuel bikes. Their passion for racing is right up there with mine and their hot rods were awesome. I watched them every time they pulled up. They put on a great show for the fans and that is what this event was all about; the fans. Even though we had some rain on Sunday I was still signing autographs and having fun,” said Force.


The inaugural Hardcore Horespower Shootout included numerous exhibition runs - before the rain hit on Sunday

The inaugural Hardcore Horespower Shootout included numerous exhibition runs – before the rain hit on Sunday

Posted with files from Elon Werner and Bruce Biegler

Photos by:  Brennan Shortall