BROWNSBURG — In spite of owning a race team for more than three decades, John Force has a lot of new oars in the water, including his daughter being in the team’s first ever Top Fuel dragster, and he hopes it’s a year of expansion here in town.
“We have had to do some expansion there in Brownsburg,” Force said. “I invested heavily back into my shop. We expanded our paint shops, doubled them in size. We want to expand our business. I just made the purchase of five acres of (Don) Prudhomme’s land across the street and I have the option by June or July to buy another five acres.”
Though Force said he loves California, which has been the site of his headquarters, he said the economy and cost of living have made it impossible for young race teams and employees to stay out there. Therefore, aside from his corporate office, his entire operation will be coming to Hendricks County.
“I need to build on that front lot (across from the JFR building) because when you have an empty lot out in the opening, it looks like things aren’t growing,” he said. “(The town of Brownsburg and I) almost had a deal put together, but I’m going to go back to them in the next month. Brownsburg is willing to work with me.”
Brownsburg Town Manager Grant Kleinhenz said Force’s expansion can only be seen as a positive for the town.
“Any time someone’s going to add jobs and build buildings, it’s a good thing,” Kleinhenz said. “It’s a positive to having someone like John here.”
Force said he hopes to help bring more industry to the area, which will in turn bring additional employment opportunities locally.
“I need Prudhomme’s land so we can grow,” he said. “The whole idea is bringing more businesses. I have all the support of the racers. Brownsburg’s got really good people. The whole idea is bringing in more workers, more businesses, people interested in rentals. We have a ways to go.”