Route 66 Raceway
Hight Looking To Win The One That Got Away
Last year headed into Rt. 66 Raceway Robert Hight and the Auto Club Ford Mustang team were hot, real hot. They were riding a three race win streak and looked like world beaters en route to another Full Throttle Funny Car championship.
Throughout the race weekend they continued to dominate qualifying No. 1 and racing to their fourth consecutive final round before being stopped in their tracks by second year driver Matt Hagan. There would be no four wins in a row and in fact Hight only won one more race in 2010, a victory on the mountain in Denver, before sliding well out of the championship chase in the Countdown.
“Last year when we won three races in a row it was an amazing stretch. I had never won three in a row and our Auto Club Ford was thumping. We qualified No. 1 in Chicago and on race day we were running pretty strong. Unfortunately we raced against someone who was running a little better in Matt Hagan,” said Hight.
“We left Chicago with the points lead and held it for a couple races but then we slipped to second. The only silver lining on our season last year is John Force won the championship.”
Hight has raced to two finals in six previous races at Rt. 66 Raceway. In 2006 Hight dropped a close race to team leader Force in the final and Force went on to win the championship that season. He has also picked up two No. 1 qualifiers at the Chicago area track.
So far this season Hight and his Jimmy Prock tuned Mustang are off to another fast start winning four races and battling for the top spot with teammate Mike Neff and Don Schumacher Racing driver Jack Beckman. Hight is only two points behind Beckman for second place in the Full Throttle point standings but both drivers are over 120 points behind the pace-setter Neff.
“I have a lot of respect for Mike. He is pulling double duty tuning and driving his Castrol GTX Mustang. We talk a lot and I know he and Jimmy have a great working relationship. They spent a lot of time together over the winter working on a number of improvements and you really see it in the success of our two Mustangs,” said Hight, a 22-time Funny Car winner.
Hight is looking to set another milestone this weekend. In Topeka he picked up the 200th Funny Car win for John Force Racing when he defeated teammate Mike Neff. Thanks to the win in Norwalk by Neff Ford Racing is on the cusp of winning its 200th Funny Car win as a manufacturer. Twenty-eight different drivers have contributed to that total but Hight hopes that a JFR driver will get them to the milestone.
“It was so cool to win the 200th Funny Car race for John Force Racing in Topeka. I was a crewman on John’s Funny Car for a lot of those wins and then to be a driver for the 200th was awesome. I would like to get the 200th Funny Car win for Ford Racing but there are four other Mustang drivers who have a great shot at it as well. You look at how well Neff has been racing plus I think John is ready for a breakout race too. You throw Bob Tasca III and Tim Wilkerson into the mix and I know that 200th win could happen at any race,” added Hight.
By: john force racing