The 2016 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series was a good season for both Courtney and Brittany Force. Both picked up wins and led the points during the season in the Funny Car and Top Fuel classes respectively.
While Brittany picked up the first three wins of her career in Top Fuel, Courtney added just one win to her Funny Car tally, but still entered the Countdown to the Championship as a championship threat. At the end of the year she wound up placing sixth, as did Brittany over in Top Fuel.
However, it was a non-championship event that Courtney claims was her biggest success of the year.
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“Our win in the Traxxas Nitro Shootout was big for our team,” she explains. “We won that event against seven of the top Funny Car teams that were the most competitive last season. To be able to get that win for our Traxxas team was a huge success and really showed that we had the car and the team to really compete with the top teams and go head to head.”
Courtney’s team had been shaken up heading into the 2016 season, and so she’s already looking forward to seeing what they’ll be able to accomplish in their second season together in 2017.
“The entire team really gelled together starting in testing and by the end of the season we were all working great together. We might not have won the championship but I think everyone on my team knows we have a great foundation to move forward into next season and beyond.
“We just need to get our routine down better and be more consistent. That is what we are going to push for in testing over the off-season. That gets us excited for next season because we have a great team, a fast car and now we have a better handle on the new Chevrolet Camaro body.”
Meanwhile in the Monster Energy camp, Brittany is still riding high after picking up her first three career wins in Top Fuel this year.
“I had been chasing that first win since my rookie season in 2013,” she explained, “and finally capturing that is something I will never forget. That day is one of the proudest moments in my career and was also JFRs first TF win and first ever double-up win with teammate Robert Hight.
“I am so proud of the Monster Energy team and all our success this year. We made quite a few changes at the beginning of the year but this team learned to immediately adjust to it so well that we were able to bring our first win home just three races into our season.”
Brittany adds that her first three wins have given her a large confidence boost going into the offseason, but also admits that there is still room for improvement that she hopes to capitalize on in 2017.
“After earning that first win I am more confident in myself and my team that nothing is out of our reach. We will push harder and push for more because we all want that number 1 on the side of our car.
“My goals for 2017 are to improve as a driver. I will push to improve my strength physically and mentally in the car. I plan to improve in areas that I struggle with as a driver. I want to finish this next season a step ahead of where I am now. As a team our goals are to win more races and go after that championship title.”