Veteran Top Alcohol Funny Car racer Andy Bohl emerged uninjured in a frightening high-speed crash on Saturday evening at the Route 66 NHRA Nationals in Joliet, Illinois.
Bohl, from Racine, Wisconsin, was racing top qualifier Annie Whiteley in the opening round of eliminations under the lights Saturday when he lost control of his Howard’s Cams-backed, Chevrolet Camaro-bodied flopper on the top end of the racetrack.
A former winner of the JEGS Allstars sportsman special event held earlier in the day at the Route 66, Bohl and his machine took a vicious turn into the left lane guardrail at the 1/8-mile mark, taking a glancing blow at over 200 mph that has rendered lesser men unconscious. The car then careened across the track on its side and slammed into the guardrail undercarriage-first, lighting up the darkness with a shower of sparks as the chassis contacted the concrete barrier.
For one final insult to injury, the car shot back across the track in the shutdown area and struck the left lane wall again virtually head-on, catching fire and shedding parts (but amazingly, not its carbon-fiber body). Despite the three brutal impacts that could have easily knocked Bohl out or caused compression injuries, he was able to climb from the battered car under his own power.
A top-15 points finisher a year ago, Bohl was making his first start of the 2019 season at Chicago.