Memphis: Steve Johnson preview

"I'm Looking For Elvis!" Steve Johnson On Racing In Memphis This Coming Weekend IRONDALE, AL 9/10/07 Snap-on Tools Suzuki Pro Stock Motorcycle racer Steve Johnson of Irondale, Ala. has his work cut out for him at this coming weekend's NHRA...

"I'm Looking For Elvis!"
Steve Johnson On Racing In Memphis This Coming Weekend

IRONDALE, AL 9/10/07 Snap-on Tools Suzuki Pro Stock Motorcycle racer Steve Johnson of Irondale, Ala. has his work cut out for him at this coming weekend's NHRA O'Reilly Mid-South Nationals at Memphis Motorsports Park. "There's going to be a very tough field of motorcycles at this race," Johnson says, "but we've got a plan that will help.

"Elvis may be gone," he continued, "but I believe what Tommy Lee Jones said in the movie 'Men In Black.' He said Elvis wasn't dead, that he'd just gone home to another planet. I can't prove that, but the one thing I do know is that Elvis is a supernatural presence. And, he's also been to the drags since he left. I know that because Funny Car driver John Force said he saw Elvis at the thousand foot mark on the track here in Memphis when his car was on fire. Elvis saved Force, and I'm thinking he can help us win this race!

"Our first stop in Memphis is going to be Graceland, where I plan on soaking up as much 'Elvis' as I can. Then we're going to take that magic to Memphis Motorsports Park, and do some serious butt-kicking!"

Johnson continues to be one of the most popular riders on the NHRA POWERade Series tour and is constantly in demand by both fans and media. But, underneath all the fun beats the heart of a determined, serious competitor. "No doubt about it," Johnson says, "Our team wants to win, and the winning starts right there in Memphis -- with Elvis riding right with me in every round!"

Johnson's Snap-on Tools Suzuki team, led by crew chief Mark Peiser, was a solid, top-half-of-the-field qualifier at last weekend's NHRA U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis, but a series of mechanical misfortunes resulted in a second round loss. But, that Number 7 qualifying position earned the team valuable points towards next year's Ringers Gloves Pro Bike Battle, which will once again take place during the Indianapolis race. "We love racing in the Battle," Johnson acknowledges, "but our goal for next season is the POWERade championship. The goal for the balance of this season is winning races.

"I know there are people out there who don't think I take racing seriously enough, but the truth of the matter is that for the last 21 years Pro Stock Motorcycle racing has been my life. I joke around because it helps to ease the tension.

"If I thought for one second there was someone on our team who wasn't as dedicated to winning as I am, well, you wouldn't see that person around for very long. Pro Stock Motorcycle drag racing is a tough, demanding endeavor, but I'm lucky in that every member of our Snap-on Tools team has the same sense of determination that I do.

"We have something to prove in the remaining four races on the POWERade Series tour, and that's that we've got an exceptionally talented group here, one that's determined to win.

"The winning starts right here, right now."

-credit: sjr

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers John Force , Lee Jones , Tommy Lee , Steve Johnson