Baytown: Warren Johnson Saturday summary

On the strength of 6.724-second, 204.57 mph run made on Friday afternoon, Warren Johnson qualified his GM Performance Parts GTO 11th for Sunday's final eliminations of the O'Reilly NHRA Spring Nationals in Houston, TX. Although this opening ...

On the strength of 6.724-second, 204.57 mph run made on Friday afternoon, Warren Johnson qualified his GM Performance Parts GTO 11th for Sunday's final eliminations of the O'Reilly NHRA Spring Nationals in Houston, TX. Although this opening performance secured his position in the field, the moment that may have given him his best chance to defend his 2005 win at this event may have come on his final qualifying attempt.

Running in the right lane on Saturday afternoon, his car slowed almost immediately after launch due to a malfunction, depriving him of a chance of improving on his starting position. However, had it come one run later, it would have ended his day in the first round.

"That last run was a very strange deal. Without warning, it didn't sputter, it didn't do anything, it just didn't have any power, pulling it down to 4400 rpm, slowly driving off in the sunset. It was fine on the burnout, it staged like it was supposed to, going right on the rev limiter, but when I let the clutch out, it decided it wasn't going to work on that run. Fortunately, it happened in qualifying and not eliminations.

"Before that, the car was decent. Last night, of course, it got into the water and took a hard right turn. We tried a couple things with mixed success today, including recording the quickest sixty-foot time of the weekend. However, we need to deal with these issues that keep coming up.

"Between tonight and the first round tomorrow morning, we will go over our GM Performance Parts GTO and get to the bottom of this issue, so we can rock and roll in eliminations."

-j2r

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Series NHRA
Drivers Warren Johnson