Madison: Kurt Johnson Friday summary

KJ Opens St. Louis Qualifying a Strong Second The first night race of the 2006 POWERade Drag Racing season got underway on Friday at Gateway International Raceway in Madison, IL with the NHRA's professional categories logging two qualifying ...

KJ Opens St. Louis Qualifying a Strong Second

The first night race of the 2006 POWERade Drag Racing season got underway on Friday at Gateway International Raceway in Madison, IL with the NHRA's professional categories logging two qualifying attempts for Sunday's final eliminations of the O'Reilly NHRA Midwest Nationals.

Continuing a trend started three races ago, Kurt Johnson and the ACDelco Cobalt Racing team were among the best of the 24 "factory hot rods" trying to qualify, posting one of the quickest elapsed times in each of the two sessions. After opening with a fourth-quick 6.749-second run, Johnson took advantage of the cooler track temperature in the evening session, stepping up to a very strong 6.693-second, 205.91 mph pass, good enough for second midway through qualifying and missing the top position by a scant one thousandth of a second. Even so, the Georgia driver was already working on plans to improve even further during Saturday's final qualifying runs.

"Although it felt as if it was tied to a post in fourth and fifth gear, our ACDelco Cobalt made a great move to the eighth mile tonight, and that's what it's all about. Besides, we see where we can pick it up. We were still a little conservative, and I think the track got a little bit better tonight than everyone expected it to get. We got after it, but were off a little.

"We know there will be little chance of taking the top spot in the 2 o'clock session, but hopefully we can get a halfway decent session tomorrow night, even though it's scheduled to be an hour earlier. I would rather have it run at the same time to have a better shot at the pole, but we may still be able to get it done. I know we're certainly going to try."

-tmgs

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Kurt Johnson