Out Of The Groove, Out Of Luck Johnson's Day Ends Early In Texas BAYTOWN, TX 4/3/06 "This just proves how tough things are on the NHRA POWERade circuit," said a disappointed Steve Johnson after his Snap-on Tools Suzuki Pro Stock Motorcycle...
Out Of The Groove, Out Of Luck
Johnson's Day Ends Early In Texas
BAYTOWN, TX 4/3/06 "This just proves how tough things are on the NHRA POWERade circuit," said a disappointed Steve Johnson after his Snap-on Tools Suzuki Pro Stock Motorcycle lost in Houston in the first round by a very slim margin to Antron Brown. "We got slightly out of the groove coming off the starting line, and I had to yank the bike back onto the right path," Johnson added. "I don't know how much elapsed time we lost, but when you see that we lost by five-thousandths of a second, well, that was probably the difference."
Johnson had a busy weekend in Houston, entertaining, with WyoTech, students from the Houston School District while also competing in the second race for Pro Stock Motorcycles this season.
"No question about it," he said. "We had our hands full, but honestly, I think we do better when the pressure's on. We learned a lot this weekend, but we're facing a steep learning curve until we can find the right person to take over as our crew chief. There are a lot of candidates out there, and we've heard from several people who are interested in joining our Snap-on Tools team, but we're not going to make a hasty decision. Finding the right person to make the tuning calls can be the key to a successful season, and that's our goal."
Johnson opened qualifying with a 7.275 second elapsed time that was only good enough for the 14th spot on the list of potential qualifiers. He made a dramatic improvement of 0.107 seconds to a 7.168 second time two runs later, only to find himself going backwards to the 15th position. "That's the kind of stuff that drives you crazy," he said later with one of his characteristic grins. "You know you've made a pretty good run, and you turn off the track just hoping the time slip agrees with what you thought happened. And then you find out that even though you improved a ton, so did everyone else.
"Believe me, it never gets any easier, which is why we're working so hard right now. I definitely believe that effort equals results."
With that in mind Johnson's team remained at Houston Raceway Park for testing on Monday, with the popular rider reporting, "Hey, we're gonna set the world on fire. We just don't know when! But, we did notch a six-and-a-half second elapsed time today. Oh! Well, that was how long it took me to put my helmet on.
"Seriously, we did run some encouraging numbers today, but just as importantly, the gang really worked efficiently together, and we continued to figure out the things we have to do to make our Snap-on Tools Suzuki a winner when we hit the track in Atlanta for our next race on May 5th."