Current NHRA Top Fuel champion Brittany Force was taken to the hospital after a brutal crash in Sunday’s first round of eliminations at the NHRA Winternationals, reports Speed Sport. Force showed no major injuries beyond bruised lungs, however, she will remain in the hospital overnight for observation.
Force’s first weekend back to defend her 2017 title ended early when she lost control of her 11,000-horsepower Top Fuel dragster, which then veered into her opponent’s lane and struck the guard wall of the Auto Club Speedway at Pomona’s drag strip. Fortunately, her opponent Terry Haddock struggled to find traction at the start and wasn’t as far down the track as Force’s car was when she lost control. The dragster came to a halt after the finish line.
Fortunately, Force was conscious and able to speak with on-site medical personnel after the crash and was transported to a local hospital from there, per Speed Sport. An MRI showed evidence of what was likely prior injuries but nothing likely from this incident beyond the bruised lungs. She was admitted overnight as a precaution.
Brittany wasn’t the only member of the Force family to be admitted to the hospital this weekend, notes Autoweek. Her father John Force was also briefly hospitalized after his dragster’s engine exploded in qualifying Friday, albeit more as a precaution. John was checked and released in under two hours and was soon back at the track, having suffered no major injuries.
UPDATE [2/12]: Brittany Force was released from the hospital Monday, having suffered no lingering effects beyond soreness, per NBC Sports. They also described the lung bruising as minor, so hopefully Force will be back in a car soon.