Commerce: Robert Hight to visit Fort Benning

HIGHT TO TAKE BEST SHOT AT FORT BENNING (YORBA LINDA, CA) --- NHRA Funny Car driver Robert Hight will join a number of NHRA stars as special guests of the world-renowned Army Marksmanship Unit on Wednesday, April 23, at Ft. Benning, Georgia ...

HIGHT TO TAKE BEST SHOT AT FORT BENNING

(YORBA LINDA, CA) --- NHRA Funny Car driver Robert Hight will join a number of NHRA stars as special guests of the world-renowned Army Marksmanship Unit on Wednesday, April 23, at Ft. Benning, Georgia for NHRA Day at Ft. Benning. The event will give Hight the chance to meet with soldiers who are preparing to deploy and also give the Funny Car championship contender a chance to participate in one of his youthful passions when participants will receive first-hand marksmanship instruction.

"I'm very excited to be headed to Ft. Benning because this is where the US Army trains their shooters. I have a friend that is a shooter from Colorado who was on the US Army trap and skeet teams," explained Hight. "He told me a lot about his early days there and how much time he spent shooting so I am excited to go and see it for myself and break a few targets."

"I am also looking forward to meeting with the men and women that are about to be deployed. I want to thank them for their service to our country and let them know how much they are appreciated by everyone at John Force Racing," added Hight.

Hight has been a valued member of John Force Racing since 1995 when he joined the team mid-season at the Denver NHRA national event. In 2004 he served as test driver before being promoted the following season to full time driver of the Auto Club Ford Mustang. He was named the Auto Club Road to the Future winner -- awarded annually to the NHRA professional rookie of the year - for 2005 and since then has finished in second place in the Funny Car points standings the past two seasons.

If there was a victim of Hight's commitment to a driving career, it was his "other life" as a world class marksman. A state trapshooting champion at age 15, he is one of the few shooters in the world to have achieved the Grand Slam of marksmanship -- 200 straight targets at the 16-foot standard distance, 100 straight at the maximum handicap distance (27 feet) and 100 doubles (two targets at once) in the same competition.

He even was good enough to be considered for a berth on the U.S. Olympic team, an opportunity he didn't pursue because of his racing career. As a shooter, Hight worked extensively with experts in hand-eye coordination and concentration, elements also critical to success in drag racing.

"In drag racing, you only have to keep that focus for two minutes -- from when you start the car, through the burnout and then the run," he said. "In shooting, you have to retain that focus a lot longer, so that probably helped me.

"I definitely think that dealing with the pressure of shooting helped (my driving)," Hight said. "The thing that surprised me, I guess, was that the pressure in racing is a lot more intense. In shooting, if you screw up, basically the only person you hurt is yourself. But when you screw up in the race car, you're not just letting yourself down you're letting down everyone else on the team. That's real pressure."

-credit: jfr

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Series NHRA
Drivers John Force , Robert Hight