JOHNSON JR. POWERS SKOAL RACING FLOPPER TO NO. 3 SPOT AT ST. LOUIS MADISON, Ill. (June 24, 2006) & ...
JOHNSON JR. POWERS SKOAL RACING FLOPPER TO
NO. 3 SPOT AT ST. LOUIS
MADISON, Ill. (June 24, 2006) Tommy Johnson Jr. saved his best for last as the veteran nitro pilot blasted his Skoal RacingSM Chevy Funny Car to a run of 4.813 seconds to earn the No. 3 qualifying position Saturday at Gateway International Raceway.
On a weekend where the crew chiefs and drivers faced treacherous track conditions due to the hot summer temperatures near St. Louis, the Iowa native entered the final day of qualifying for the 10th annual O'Reilly Midwest Nationals pitted in the No. 9 qualifying position with a 4.926-second pass. After losing traction on his opening effort, Johnson used a tune-up from crew chief Mike Green to blister the Gateway quarter mile in 4.813 seconds at 323.81 mph to record the third quickest time of qualifying. Johnson qualified ninth at the St. Louis race last June.
"There were some tough conditions out here this weekend with running at both the day and night," Johnson said. "We knew we could run a good number. I'm really happy with that 4.81. That was a great run, but we can't use that info until the later rounds. We've got to be on top of our game in the early rounds and then you'll see some good times in the later rounds on Sunday."
The seven-time NHRA winner will battle No. 14 qualifier Jeff Arend in the first round of Funny Car eliminations on Sunday afternoon at Gateway Int'l Raceway. Johnson is 3-1 in his career versus Arend.