Dallas: Kurt Johnson preview

Kurt Johnson Looks to Use Dallas as Late Season Launching Pad ACDelco Racing team sets sights on winning start to three-race swing Sugar Hill, Ga., September 21, 2004 - With only five races left in the 2004 season, every stop on the POWERade...

Kurt Johnson Looks to Use Dallas as Late Season Launching Pad
ACDelco Racing team sets sights on winning start to three-race swing

Sugar Hill, Ga., September 21, 2004 - With only five races left in the 2004 season, every stop on the POWERade Drag Racing circuit grows in importance. Throughout the pit area, every team has targeted these final few events as a means to help accomplish goals set before the season.

Following last week's rainout in Reading, this weekend's O'Reilly Auto Parts Fall Nationals in Dallas, TX has become the first of three consecutive races, which Pro Stock standout Kurt Johnson sees as the initial step of a late-season surge in the standings by the ACDelco Cavalier Racing team.

"Our goal for the rest of the season is the same as it has been all year - to win as many races and climb as high in the standings as possible," stated Johnson. "Therefore, with Reading being postponed, this weekend's race in Dallas becomes the first of a very important three-race swing for the ACDelco Racing team, If we are able to put together a string of strong performances, I believe we can make a significant move up."

Two factors play into Johnson's plans. The first is the Texas Motorplex, site of this weekend's race. Best known as the only all-concrete racing surface on the NHRA tour, it has been one of the second-generation racer's favorites throughout his career. Starting with his first visit in 1993, when he powered to the winner's circle as a rookie, KJ has accumulated an impressive record at the Ennis quarter-mile with three wins in five final round appearances, bolstering his confidence heading into this year's edition.

"I love racing in Dallas," said Johnson. "I know some people may have a difficult time with the all-concrete surface, but I enjoy going down that racetrack. If you know what you're doing, stay in the groove, and the weather cooperates, the potential is there for some quick times.

"The set-up will be the key, because even though the track looks good, there is a tendency to spin the tires. Therefore, the four-link, clutch and shock set-ups will be critical. Fortunately, our ACDelco Cavalier has been making clean, straight runs, so we should be in good shape."

The second aspect buoying the team's hopes is their race car, which has shown the consistent performance necessary to contend for the win this weekend. With an added day's preparation, further progress has been made in the never-ending search for horsepower.

"We're comfortable with our ACDelco Cavalier's performance to the point that we don't need to test, preferring instead to work on finding horsepower," said Johnson. "Fortunately, we have some projects going together at the moment that look quite promising, and having an extra day to work on things before coming to Dallas was one of the few favorable results from last weekend's rainout.

"We were able to do a little unexpected R & D which will help us be even better prepared for this weekend's race. I've been to the final round a few times at the Motorplex, and won three, including my rookie year in 1993, so we know what it takes. I'd certainly like to add another Texas-sized win and start this stretch run off on the right foot."

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Series NHRA
Drivers Kurt Johnson