Funny cars are fast. So fast, in fact, it is hard to grasp how drivers react in a timely manner. To make them as fast as possible, teams go to great lengths of removing excess weight, creating an aerodynamic body and massively improving the engine. Of course, V8 HEMI monsters dominate the Funny car scene and teams devised a way to improve their power to some really disturbing levels. Funny cars usually have engines developing between 6.000 and 8.000 hp, and all that from a V8 engine. In some extreme cases power from one cylinder can get to 1000 hp. These levels definitely put a whole lot of stress on the engine and in some cases, this is what happens – everything blows up in a great blaze of fire.
Just a few days ago, Jack Beckman’s Funny Car blew up at the New England Dragway during NHRA qualifying session. The blower was thrown out, all the intake manifold destroyed and the whole upper section of the car was annihilated. Luckily, radio communication between the driver and his team worked perfectly and we found out that Jack was OK after the accident.
Leaving the scene on foot is really the best testament to the NHRA safety protocols. They did a hell of a job-making safety a priority. Funny cars are obviously as safe as they could be. We hope to see Beckman on the drag strip in a couple of days. This would be awesome.