Mopar Dodge Driver Johnson Jumps to No. 10 in Friday Qualifying at Pomona
Pomona, Calif. — Allen Johnson moved up the qualifying charts in his Mopar® Dodge Avenger NHRA Pro Stock car, advancing to the preliminary No. 10 spot in the single Friday qualifying session today at the Auto Club NHRA Finals at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona. The Team Mopar veteran will attempt to rocket all the way to the No. 1 spot in the final two qualifying sessions scheduled for tomorrow.
Johnson was No. 16 after his 6.620-second/197.77 mph run in the opening round of qualifying. The Greeneville, Tenn. native saw significant improvement after his J&J Racing team swapped in a new Mopar HEMI® following his Thursday run, with Johnson recording a quicker and faster 6.575/210.60 pass to take a major leap up the qualifying ladder.
“It was a good run for the conditions,” said Johnson, who qualified No. 1 at the 2010 NHRA Finals. “It’s a good building block for tomorrow, because tomorrow morning should be the fastest run more than likely, with the cooler temperatures.
“We’re trying to build up to it, and make the last run of qualifying our best run, and that way be ready for Sunday. We’ve got the right lane tomorrow, and the left lane is the best, but hopefully with the sun off the track the lanes will be a bit more equal. I definitely feel like we can move a lot deeper into the field tomorrow and position our Mopar Dodge well for the elimination rounds.”
Mopar-powered Pro Stock rookie phenom Vincent Nobile remained in the No. 6 position on the strength of his 6.561 effort yesterday. Fellow HEMI-powered Pro Stocker V. Gaines improved on his Thursday qualifying effort and was listed at No. 13 in today’s session.
Mopar-powered drivers also enjoyed a strong qualifying outing in the Funny Car class, as Dodge Charger R/T driver Matt Hagan moved two spots, from fifth to third, with a 4.088-second pass, which was the quickest of the round, earning Hagan three valuable bonus points in the tight, tension-packed battle for the Funny Car championship. Fellow Don Schumacher Racing Dodge Charger R/T drivers Ron Capps, Jack Beckman and Johnny Gray are ranked No. 5, No. 7, and No. 2