Phoenix: Warren Johnson Saturday summary

WJ Rides Career-Best Top Speed to Fifth Starting Spot in Phoenix Warren Johnson and the GM Performance Parts GTO Racing team completed a strong qualifying performance on Saturday at the Checker Schuck's Kragen NHRA Nationals in Phoenix, AZ ...

WJ Rides Career-Best Top Speed to Fifth Starting Spot in Phoenix

Warren Johnson and the GM Performance Parts GTO Racing team completed a strong qualifying performance on Saturday at the Checker Schuck's Kragen NHRA Nationals in Phoenix, AZ capturing the fifth starting spot for Sunday's final eliminations. Improving upon his previous time in each of his first three attempts, Johnson took advantage of the horsepower-friendly conditions at Firebird Raceway to post a 6.652-second elapsed time with a career-best top speed of 208.14 mph in the third qualifying session, which proved to be his run of record. Having secured his best starting spot since qualifying third in Sonoma, CA last year, the six-time champion turned his attention to successfully defending his title from this event a year ago.

"The most important part about our qualifying effort is that we made decent runs every time we ran, and learned something every time. For example, on our first run this morning, we were fairly confident that our time from Friday wouldn't get bumped out so this GM Performance Parts GTO crew got together to discuss with some few potential tuning scenarios.

"We evaluated the pros and cons of each one, and came up with a decision, one fortified by the fact that since the pre-season test session in Las Vegas, we had gotten down the track every time. Things obviously worked out in our favor, so maybe this tuning by committee has some merit!

"We were a little too conservative in the last session, which might have cost us a couple hundredths, but the information gathered will certainly come in handy. It's supposed to be a little warmer tomorrow so we will look at what we accomplished on our previous runs, make our adjustments and go from there."

-credit: j2r

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Series NHRA
Drivers Warren Johnson