John Force out of intensive care as he continues recovery from traumatic brain injury

Less than two weeks after drag racing legend John Force suffered what has now been revealed to be a traumatic brain injury (TBI), among other injuries that included a fractured sternum and a right wrist injury, in a fiery crash following an engine explosion that sent his Funny Car into a concrete guard wall at over 300 mph, doctors acknowledged his positive response to treatment. The 75-year-old Force was moved out of neuro-intensive care and into acute neuro care at the hospital where he was transported by air ambulance on June 23.

The latest upgrade was welcomed by Force family members who have maintained a presence at the hospital since the 16-time NHRA champion’s arrival, but medical professionals emphasized once again that the journey ahead will be a long and difficult one.

Although Force is still dealing with cognitive and behavioral symptoms from his TBI, his John Force Racing team stressed in its latest update today that the fact he can converse with medical staff, family members and team president Robert Hight, who flew in this week, is an encouraging sign. However, there have also been periods of confusion, which doctors say require time and patience to treat.


Also noteworthy is the fact that Force has regained his equilibrium to the point that he has been able to start walking with the assistance of medical staff members.

According to family, the next step for the man whose career has spanned six decades likely will be a move to a long-term facility specializing in TBI and associated symptoms. A time frame for that move has not yet been determined.

Story originally appeared on Racer