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Force on Courtney in Body Issue‏ (1 Viewer)


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Q: You've been great for the sponsorship and the growth of the NHRA. It appears now you have a daughter who has done something which can be extremely fascinating in the growth of the NHRA. How do you feel about her exposure in the ESPN Magazine?

JOHN FORCE: Well, it's like I am with my children and you have to be a father and you have to be a boss. My kids do wrong in the race car, I get after them. They're still my children and I love them. Just like [Don] Schumacher loves his kids, or Antron's [Brown] dad loves him. When this issue came up a few years ago, they didn't want me because I was cute, but because I was broken up, they wanted to put me in how I recovered. It was kind of embarrassing to me. I was never pretty. I don't have a body like [Tony] Schumacher and [Matt] Hagan and Antron [Brown]. I went and did it, but I felt it could give more exposure for my sponsors, Castrol, Ford, Auto Club, Mac Tools, and BrandSource. I did it, took my hits. But the reactions were pretty good. A lot of fans wanted autographs because of the ESPN issue.”

“(ESPN) came last year. It all started because Courtney was saying, Dad, I struggle with this Funny Car, my muscles are hurting. I said, ‘Get in the training.’ She got into it last year. I go into the gym all the time just to keep my body moving. My daughter got into it. Then ESPN came in and said, ‘Hey, we'd like to use her.’ She thought, because it's my first year, I'm a rookie, I want to establish myself as a driver. I'm not really a sex symbol, I'm a racecar driver that has to be in shape, like any of the female drivers or the male drivers. She went after it hard. Turned it down the first year.”

“(ESPN) came back this year. I said to mom, ‘We got to look at it as a business. It will be great exposure for the sponsors.’ Went to each sponsor, got approval. Courtney wanted to do it this time because she was really working out, hitting it hard. She's a pretty girl, attractive, got a great physique. They really do it and do it right. It's not Playboy or those types of magazines; it's really about an athlete. Other athletes have done it. I was just told that she got the front cover nationally, and if they sell worldwide, she's the one individual that's going national, they picked her even over the quarterback of the 49ers, got his name somewhere, Colin Kaepernick from the 49ers, she had 78% of the votes, and she's number one. He was behind her quite a ways. So she's going to go nationally with it and you'll see it everywhere nationwide. It's working so far. Did we get a few hiccups? Yup. They there were people that said, ‘My kids watch it, they love Ashley, now we don't know.’ Eight-year-olds don't come in and buy ESPN Magazine off the rack. What they do is watch us on TV. I didn't know it was going to be on TV Sunday. I was shocked when I was told it was on TV. Once again, it's exposure. My daughter is very proud of what she's done, the way she looks. I thought it was done - what's the word - I don't know what the word is, but they did it right. It's my kid and I'm going to be proud of her as a father. As an owner, got us great exposure so far. I think it's a positive note for NHRA and all the sponsors and I'm going to stick by her no matter what anybody says. We made that decision and we moved ahead with it.”

Q: Where did they get the nostalgic dragster in the ESPN Magazine and did Ford get upset?

JOHN FORCE: It is to promote your sponsors is why we do it. ESPN, they do it their way, just like [Eric] Swaringen, the producer at ESPN, he made a decision to put it on to promote the magazine that was coming out a week later, this Friday. I think he put it out as teasers. At first, I didn't understand. I was like, ‘Wow’, when I saw my kid, because I had not seen the pictures before. I'm a dad so I don't really want to look. I started getting the calls. Yeah, a few negatives on TV because of kids watching. But I have to look at the big picture. The world has changed. We have to go to market different. As long as they do it with good taste. I was excited. I thought the nostalgia wasn't about showing Funny Cars or dragsters. Somebody said, ‘That Mustang, she ran out of gas in the middle of the desert.’ That was the whole idea, to fit anybody that has a street car, loves the desert, loves nostalgia. They do it, you don't have a say, and they pick the pictures. So far, so good.”


Nitro Member
an autographed courtney cover photo will be highly sought after.
i do not seek autographs nor care to get any, but the thought of
buying the magazine tomorrow, then standing in line for her autograph
@ brainerd is kind of enticing.

all this hype over something in print; in the midst
of our instant online world.....kinda' cool IMO.

suddenly a lot of folks are going to know who courtney force is and
who and what she's associated with.


Nitro Member
my past crew chief once told me something dat sticks wit me 2day, drag racing is bout one's ego, and pumpin it up,,magine dat, so true , so true :eek: this world is not wat it once was and never will b, wen u put the possibility of makin money n the mix all bets r off;)
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