Richmond: Warren Johnson rain makeup preview

WJ is Ready to Wrap Up Richmond GM Performance Parts GTO crew returns to Virginia for rain-delayed race Sugar Hill, Ga., October 12, 2006 -- For the second time in the last three races, the POWERade Drag Racing Series will return to a...

WJ is Ready to Wrap Up Richmond
GM Performance Parts GTO crew returns to Virginia for rain-delayed race

Sugar Hill, Ga., October 12, 2006 -- For the second time in the last three races, the POWERade Drag Racing Series will return to a racetrack to complete a previously scheduled national event. Just two weeks after completing the rain-delayed race in Reading, PA, the straight-line set heads back to Richmond, VA this weekend for the Torco Racing Fuel Nationals, which were postponed one week ago due to the nor'easter that blanketed the East Coast.

However, scheduling means little to Warren Johnson and the GM Performance Parts GTO Racing team. Although they naturally would have preferred to complete the race at Virginia Motorsports Park during their first visit, the three-member crew will take a pragmatic approach as they return to the Old Dominion State.

"The rain delay is more of an inconvenience than anything else," stated Johnson. "The biggest impact, besides the additional cost for traveling to and from our shop, is the loss of five days' preparation time for the last two races of the season.

"With no suitable tracks in our immediate area, there really wasn't enough time to test anything new, so we'll rely on the information we were going to use week ago. However, it's the same for everyone else in the pit area, so the GM Performance Parts GTO team will make the best of it, doing whatever we can to come out on top.

"Looking at the forecast, we will have to be on top of our game, as atmospheric conditions will be at a premium. Given the fact that the track at Virginia Motorsports Park is relatively smooth, records are certain to fall. Since we never really test under these conditions, we will have to rely on our past experience and come up with a combination that will work for the first qualifying session. The biggest unknown will be how the racing surface will react, which will naturally depend on how the NHRA prepares it. To be honest, I'm not really concerned with how cool it gets, as long as it stays dry!

"In any case, our attitude is the same whether it's 60 degrees and dry or 100 and humid. We're there to win, and that's where our focus will be. Let Mother Nature take care of the weather and the NHRA take care of the track -- we'll make sure our GM Performance Parts GTO is ready."

Quick Notes on Warren Johnson & the GM Performance Parts GTO team entering The Inaugural Torco Racing Fuels Nationals:

The Professor Leads the Class in Richmond: This will be Warren's seventh career NHRA national event at Virginia Motorsports Park. In his previous six starts, he has four wins (which is the most by a Pro Stock driver) in four final round appearances (including the first four races from 1995-1998), and a 16-2 elimination round record for a spectacular .889 win percentage.

WJ is a Strong Starter in Dinwiddie: In six Virginia Motorsports Park starts, WJ has four No. 1 qualifying performances and six starts in the top two positions for a stellar 1.33 average starting position.

Track Record Holder: Warren holds the top speed record at Virginia Motorsports Park at 202.24 mph, which he set in April of 1999.

-credit: j2r

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Series NHRA
Drivers Warren Johnson