St. Louis: Allen Johnson preview

Allen Johnson Hunts for Third Career Final Appearance, First Victory at St. Louis The Mopar Dodge Avenger driver looks to capture his eighth career NHRA Pro Stock win at AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals Auburn Hills, Mich. -- Team Mopar...

Allen Johnson Hunts for Third Career Final Appearance, First Victory at St. Louis

The Mopar Dodge Avenger driver looks to capture his eighth career NHRA Pro Stock win at AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals

Auburn Hills, Mich. -- Team Mopar Pro Stock driver Allen Johnson likes Gateway International Raceway, located just outside of St. Louis--Johnson has banked two career NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series final round appearances at the venue. The Mopar Dodge Avenger driver will like Gateway a lot more if he can power his way to a third final round visit and a victory this weekend at the AAA Insurance NHRA Midwest Nationals.

Johnson advanced to the 1999 and 2003 final rounds at St. Louis, scoring runner-up finishes. The Greeneville, Tenn. native has earned one final round appearance this season, at the NHRA Houston event, is second in the Pro Stock point standings and is brimming with confidence heading to Gateway.

"I believe this Mopar Dodge Avenger is the best race car I've ever had and the J&J Racing team has just been awesome," said Johnson. "I think I've been doing my job as the driver as well. I've been practicing on the tree a lot. I was looking at the results from last year at Gateway when I got beat on a holeshot, so I'm looking to rectify last year's injustice."

Johnson's J&J Racing team supplies the Mopar HEMI engines for Vinnie Deceglie's Pro Stock team. Deceglie had been competing in a Dodge Stratus following his crash at the NHRA Phoenix event in February but will be back in a Dodge Avenger at St. Louis, which should also be a boon to Johnson.

"Vinnie's testing his new Dodge Avenger in Cordova, Ill., and Mark [Ingersoll, Johnson's crew chief] has been there helping out," said Johnson. "It should assist us to have Vinnie back in an Avenger. It'll help us gain more data if we're both in the same car."

Johnson is in his 15th year behind the wheel of a Mopar-powered Pro Stock car. He celebrated his 300th race last year at St. Louis and will earn his 200th career round win if he can claim victory in the first round of eliminations at Gateway.

"I look at every milestone as that I'm fortunate to be able to do it," Johnson said. "Every milestone I reach, you look and say, 'Gosh, I can't believe I've won that many rounds, let alone raced that many rounds.'"

-source: mopar

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Series NHRA
Drivers Allen Johnson