FORCE'S CHRISTMAS EVENT IS A HIT
The NHRA POWERade Series veteran, who recently scored his 14th Funny Car title, welcomed several thousand visitors to his race shop in Yorba Linda, Calif. Sunday for his annual Holiday Car Show.
Nobody throws a Christmas party like John Force.
The NHRA POWERade Series veteran, who recently scored his 14th Funny Car title, welcomed several thousand visitors to his race shop in Yorba Linda, Calif., Sunday for his annual Holiday Car Show.
The annual event, which benefits the California Highway Patrol's CHiPs for Kids toy drive, was another success as fans were treated to a custom car show, as well as an autograph session that featured some of the top competitors on the POWERade Series tour, including Force and his teammates Eric Medlen and Robert Hight. Other drivers in attendance included 2005 Funny Car champion Gary Scelzi, nitro coupe rookie Jack Beckman and Top Fuel veteran Cory McClenathan.
The California Highway Patrol's CHiP's for Kids toy drive is a charitable program which raises toys for under-privilege children. It's a program that Force fully endorses and this is one way he believes he can give back to his community. Spectators on Sunday were asked to bring a $10 unwrapped toy to help the CHiPs program.
"This is a great state we live in and it gives us opportunities to be able to do something like this," Force said. "It's Christmas and it's all about raising gifts for the needy children. That's the most important thing. I just have to thank everyone who came out. We had guys give up their time, guys like Gary Scelzi, Jack Beckman, Tom "The Mongoose" McEwen...the list goes on and on."
The show was gear-head's dream. The list of cars available for viewing included several old-time hot rods like '32 Ford Coupes, several Willy's and other hundreds of muscle cars, as well as old-time motorcycles, classic cars and a few race cars.
Fans also were treated to a tour of Force's racing headquarters and his museum as well as some live entertainment from "The Answer to Classic Rock."
"I'm just amazed what it's grown to," said Force of the show, which brought almost as much traffic as there would be at a POWERade Series event. "It's getting bigger every year, so much that today I almost had myself praying for rain because of the traffic problem, but the California Highway Patrol kind of covered me."
Force's efforts have not gone unnoticed. California State Assemblyman Bob Huff, who represents Yorba Linda and other surrounding communities, was there to present Force with a citation for his efforts.
"It's just a real privilege to see so many people come out and who are attached to the industry (of motor sports)," Huff said. "I have to thank John for all he has done, not just for what he's done in his racing, but what he does for the CHiPs for Kids toy drive, because ultimately that's what's important. He truly is a Force to be reckoned with."