Allen Johnson continues to hit “home runs” in the NHRA Pro Stock Series.
Johnson gained the provisional No.1 qualifying position on the strength of a 6.568 run at 211.43 miles per hour. He edged out No. 2 Jason Line who turned in a 6.586, 210.54 performance.
A bona fide long ball hitter earlier in the season, Johnson found his base-hitting groove in the AAA Texas NHRA Nationals, upping his on-base percentage by running the quickest elapsed times in both sessions to also gain six bonus qualifying points. Should the run hold through Saturday, it will be the 10th No. 1 qualifying efforts this season for Johnson.
“Our game plan with the Mopar Dodge Avenger is consistency,” said Johnson. “We’ve done that so far after two runs. We won both runs and that’s what we were shooting for. We want to build up those little points. It’s a great track and great surface. There’s a lot of traction out there and that’s what we were banking on.”
The racing surface at the Texas Motorplex, the original all-concrete drag strip, is much different than the one Johnson faced last weekend at zMax Dragway, another concrete track.
“The difference between Charlotte and here is Charlotte (is like) a ski ramp – flat on the starting line and ground downward,” explained Johnson. “It’s really, really finicky for Pro Stock cars because as your rear tires go through the staging beams they start dropping and the rearend starts trying to kick the rear of the car out. This means you really have to keep the front end of the car down. It makes it a little tricky and the car wants to spin the tires.
“We never really got a great handle on it there. It was decent on race day but Jason and Greg they have a handle on that track. They test there all of the time.”
At the Texas Motorplex, Johnson is the dialed driver.
“This track is great, it is flat, and without the ski slope,” Johnson explained. “It’s a more narrow groove. If you stay in the groove, you’re going to be okay. It’s smooth.”
And just like the Motorplex, no one is smoother than the driver from Greeneville, Tenn.
“Everything is perfect right now,” Johnson said, face beaming with pride. “We’re beating on eight-and-a-half cylinders. We just need to do more of the same – be consistent.”
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