Force seeking 100th career victory at Gatornationals

Force seeking 100th career victory at Mac Tools Gatornationals With milestone victory will join short list of race drivers to earn 100 trophies GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- With a victory in Sunday's Mac Tools NHRA Gatornationals, John Force will join...

Force seeking 100th career victory at Mac Tools Gatornationals
With milestone victory will join short list of race drivers to earn 100 trophies

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- With a victory in Sunday's Mac Tools NHRA Gatornationals, John Force will join an elite list of drivers to earn 100 victories in major auto racing competition. Force, an 11-time NHRA Funny Car champion, would join NASCAR legends Richard Petty (200 wins) and David Pearson (105) as the only competitors in motorsports history to reach the century mark in career victories.

Additionally, Force would become the first driver in motorsports to earn 100 victories in the modern era (1972-2002).

Force, 52, came up short last month in his bid to achieve the milestone, losing a final round battle to Del Worsham in Phoenix when his Castrol GTX Ford Mustang lost traction just after the start.

Of Force's 99 career victories, seven have come at the historic Gainesville Raceway quarter-mile, including a win last year.

Force has earned more victories than several of auto racing's prominent drivers, including most notably Darrell Waltrip (84), A.J. Foyt (79), the late Dale Earnhardt (76) and Mario Andretti (65).

In the world of drag racing, a pair of legendary Pro Stock drivers are closest to his leading total, including Warren Johnson (87) and Bob Glidden (85). He has no equal in Funny Car competition, as his closest active rival in the career win column is Cruz Pedregon (22). Retired driver Don Prudhomme is second among all-time Funny Car winners with 35.

<pre> MAJOR AUTO RACING SERIES' CAREER VICTORY LEADERS:

Richard Petty           200, NASCAR
David Pearson           105, NASCAR
John Force              99, NHRA Funny Car
Warren Johnson          87, NHRA Pro Stock
Bob Glidden             85, NHRA Pro Stock
Bobby Allison           84, NASCAR
Darrell Waltrip         84, NASCAR
Cale Yarborough         83, NASCAR
A.J. Foyt               79, CART, NASCAR
Dale Earnhardt          76, NASCAR
Mario Andretti          65, CART, F1, NASCAR
Kenny Bernstein         61, NHRA Top Fuel and Funny Car
Jeff Gordon             58, NASCAR
Lee Petty               55, NASCAR
Michael Schumacher      54, F1
Rusty Wallace           54, NASCAR
Joe Amato               52, NHRA Top Fuel
Alain Prost             51, F1
Ned Jarrett             50, NASCAR
Junior Johnson          50, NASCAR
Don Prudhomme           49, NHRA Funny Car and Top Fuel
Herb Thomas             48, NASCAR
Buck Baker              46, NASCAR
Michael Andretti        41, CART
Bill Elliott            41, NASCAR
Ayrton Senna            41, F1
Tim Flock               40, NASCAR
Al Unser                38, CART
Bobby Issac             37, NASCAR
Don Garlits             35, NHRA Top Fuel
Al Unser Jr.            33, CART, IRL
Mark Martin             32, NASCAR

MAJOR AUTO RACING SERIES' WIN LEADERS IN THE MODERN ERA OF MOTORSPORTS (1972-2002):

John Force              99, NHRA Funny Car
Warren Johnson          87, NHRA Pro Stock
Bob Glidden             85, NHRA Pro Stock
Darrell Waltrip         84, NASCAR
Dale Earnhardt          76, NASCAR
Cale Yarborough         69, NASCAR
Kenny Bernstein         61, NHRA Top Fuel and Funny Car
Richard Petty           60, NASCAR
Jeff Gordon             58, NASCAR
Bobby Allison           55, NASCAR
Michael Schumacher      54, F1
Rusty Wallace           54, NASCAR
Joe Amato               52, NHRA Top Fuel
Alain Prost             51, F1
Don Prudhomme           49, NHRA Funny Car and Top Fuel
David Pearson           45, NASCAR
Michael Andretti        41, CART
Bill Elliott            41, NASCAR
Ayrton Senna            41, F1
Mario Andretti          32, CART, F1
Al Unser Jr.            33, CART, IRL
Mark Martin             32, NASCAR
A.J. Foyt               31, CART, NASCAR
Nigel Mansell           31, F1

Auto Racing Series Abbreviation Key: NASCAR- National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (Winston Cup Series) NHRA -- National Hot Rod Association CART -- Championship Auto Racing Teams F1 -- Formula One IRL -- Indy Racing League

NHRA DRAG RACING CAREER WIN LEADERS (Top 10, Top Fuel, Funny Car and Pro Stock only)

1. John Force, Funny Car                        99
2. Warren Johnson, Pro Stock                    87
3. Bob Glidden, Pro Stock                       85
4. Kenny Bernstein, Top Fuel, Funny Car         61
5. Joe Amato, Top Fuel                          52
6. Don Prudhomme, Funny Car and Top Fuel        49
7. Don Garlits, Top Fuel                        35
8. Darrell Alderman, Pro Stock                  27
9. Lee Shepherd, Pro Stock                      26
    Cory McClenathan, Top Fuel                  26
10. Gary Scelzi, Top Fuel                       25

NHRA FUNNY CAR WIN LEADERS (Top five)

1. John Force           99
2. Don Prudhomme        35
3. Kenny Bernstein      30
4. Cruz Pedregon        22
5. Ed McCulloch         18
    Mark Oswald         18

NHRA POWERADE DRAG RACING SERIES, ROUND NO. 3:

WHAT: Mac Tools NHRA Gatornationals, third of 23 events in $50 million NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series for 2002 WHEN: March 14-17, 2002 WHERE: Gainesville Raceway, Gainesville, Fla.

SCHEDULE: Qualifying Friday and Saturday (11 a.m., 2:15 p.m.) Eliminations Sunday (11 a.m.)

TV: Saturday, ESPN2, qualifying, 8-10 p.m. ET Sunday, ESPN2, eliminations, 5-7 p.m. ET

QUICK FACTS: John Force will attempt to score his 100th career NHRA victory in Funny Car competition ... NHRA legends "Big Daddy" Don Garlits and Shirley Muldowney will compete in Top Fuel, while Pro Stock legend Bob Glidden will take to the track for the third time this season in his comeback attempt ... Angelle Savoie begins defense of her 2001 NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle championship at this event ... Gene Wilson, son of famous TV outdoorsman Orlando Wilson, will make his NHRA driving debut for the Team Mopar Pro Stock team, owned by Houston's David Nickens. Wilson, new teammate of three-time NHRA Pro Stock champ Darrell Alderman, is the defending IHRA Pro Stock champion and replaces Mark Osborne in the second Team Mopar Dodge Neon R/T.

TICKETS: (800) 884-NHRA

-nhra-

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Bill Elliott , Jeff Gordon , Darrell Waltrip , Rusty Wallace , Michael Schumacher , Shirley Muldowney , Darrell Alderman , Kenny Bernstein , Warren Johnson , Del Worsham , John Force , Joe Amato , Gary Scelzi , Al Unser Jr. , Michael Andretti , Nigel Mansell , Bob Glidden , Ned Jarrett , Mario Andretti , Gene Wilson , Richard Petty , Cruz Pedregon , Alain Prost , Ayrton Senna , Don Garlits , Cory McClenathan , Don Prudhomme , Junior Johnson , Bobby Allison , A.J. Foyt , Cale Yarborough , Tim Flock , Mark Martin , David Pearson , Lee Petty , Al Unser