Warren Johnson Scores Runner-Up Finish at Pontiac Pro Stock Showdown Las Vegas, NV, February 5, 2006 - Warren Johnson and the GM Performance Parts GTO Racing Team took advantage of the final weekend before the start of the 2006 NHRA POWERade...
Warren Johnson Scores Runner-Up Finish at Pontiac Pro Stock Showdown
Las Vegas, NV, February 5, 2006 - Warren Johnson and the GM Performance Parts GTO Racing Team took advantage of the final weekend before the start of the 2006 NHRA POWERade Drag Racing season to participate in the first organized Pro Stock drag race of the year, the Pontiac Pro Stock Showdown. Held for the first time at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, this annual pre season event pits the best among the "factory hot rods" in a one-day, winner-take-all contest.
It proved to be a productive day for "The Professor" and his young crew, as they powered to a runner-up finish. They opened by qualifying second with a 6.766-second elapsed time with a class-best top speed of 203.77 mph. Their strong performance continued through eliminations, as WJ combined lightning-fast .001 reaction times with consistently quick 6.7-second times to eliminate Mike Thomas and Allen Johnson in the early rounds.
In the semi-finals, Johnson was the beneficiary of a red-light start by David Connolly, punctuating his run to the final with a 6.782-second, 203.95 mph run, the fastest of the day in Pro Stock. Squaring off against veteran Larry Morgan in the final round, Johnson continued his steady performance with a 6.802-second, 203.80-mph pass. Unfortunately, it went for naught, as he left the starting line two-hundredths of a second early, handing the automatic win to his opponent. Despite the initial disappointment, the six-time champion was still able to find many positives in his team's performance.
"We fought the air gap all day," stated Johnson. "After I red-lit twice in qualifying, we dialed more in, and I had a .001 light. We put more in for the second round and I still went .001 on the tree. For the semis, I waited until the ambers almost went out before leaving, and still had a .031. reaction time. In the finals, it had gotten dark and I was able to see the light better, and ended up going red. However, looking at the ladder, I see I wasn't the only one. (Note: There were a total of eight red-light starts during Saturday's eliminations)
"Even so, we were able to work on dialing in the set-up our GM Performance Parts GTO. We still have a little work to do, but we're in pretty good shape. We'll stay on for a couple days here in Las Vegas and do some additional testing, making sure we're ready for when the season starts next week in Pomona. Overall, it wasn't a bad day at theoffice."