NHRA great John Force out of intensive care

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RICHMOND, Va. — NHRA drag racing great John Force has been moved out of neurological intensive care after suffering a traumatic brain injury in a fiery, 300 mph crash at the Virginia Nationals last month.

The 75-year-old Force has been moved from neurological intensive care into acute neuro care at the hospital where he was transported by air ambulance on June 23, John Force Racing said Friday in a release. He suffered a traumatic brain injury and other injuries, including a fractured sternum, in the crash during the first round of Funny Car eliminations.

Force’s car had a catastrophic engine failure at the finish line, with the vehicle going across the center line and slamming into the left concrete guard wall then careening back across into the right wall.

The team’s statement said Force still has periods of confusion and will likely at some point move to a long-term facility specializing in traumatic brain injuries and associated symptoms. He has been able to speak and to walk with help from medical staff, but the release said, “Medical professionals emphasized once again that the journey ahead will be a long and difficult one.”

In 2007, at age 58, Force was seriously injured in a racing crash in Ennis, Texas. He has continued to race at the highest level, earning his second win of the season and record 157th NHRA victory in New Hampshire.

Force’s daughter, Brittany, is a two-time drag racing world champion.

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