Ron "Big Yohns" Johnson made a decision this week to change his race team to better cope with the rigors of Nostalgia Junior Fuel racing. As of today, Mendy Fry will be driving Johnson's San Diego-based Junior Fuel nostalgia dragster.
Ron commented, "With Mendy's addition, Kol and I will be able to concentrate on learning how to run at our optimum level, hopefully win some rounds, and maybe, dare I say it, a race."
For anyone who doesn't recognize her name, Mendy Fry is a Santa Rosa, California, native who raced from the mid-1980s through the mid-1990s with a great deal of success. Running a big-inch AHRA combination in Top Alcohol Dragster, Fry ran the quickest time of the 1988 drag racing season at 6.15 seconds. Says Johnson, "She is a delightful young lady and is just as excited about this deal as I am."
Ron Johnson is backing up his decision with an entirely new motor, built with "the best stuff he is able to secure." The new powerplant won't be in the car until the Bakersfield March Meet at the soonest. It will be a joint effort of a number Johnson's racing friends, including Jim Swedberg, Joe Schubeck, Bob Meyer, Bob McKray, and others.
The team plans to run several Goodguys and ADRA meets and possibly a few NHRA divisional races in the new A/Nostalgia Dragster category of Competition Eliminator. A return trip to Bakersfield for the California Hot Rod Reunion is on tap for October.
Bob McKray is putting the finishing touches on a rebuild of the current engine, so the team will have a fresh powerplant going into the New Year. They will run at least one test and tune event before Bakersfield.
The combination of Ron Johnson's investment and Mendy Fry's driving should be enough to shake up the troops on the Nostalgia circuits in 2001.
Bill Pratt www.draglist.com