Dallas: Warren Johnson preview

An Optimistic WJ Appreciates Added Prep Time for Dallas Early return from Reading rainout offers GM Performance Parts team valuable development days SUGAR HILL, GA., September 21, 2004 - Warren Johnson is a self-proclaimed optimist, preferring...

An Optimistic WJ Appreciates Added Prep Time for Dallas
Early return from Reading rainout offers GM Performance Parts team valuable development days

SUGAR HILL, GA., September 21, 2004 - Warren Johnson is a self-proclaimed optimist, preferring to view things in a positive light whenever possible. Therefore, it is not a surprise that the Pro Stock legend would find a benefit in last weekend's unfortunate rainout in Reading.

Within moments of the cancellation, the GM Performance Parts Grand Am Racing team leapt into action, immediately shifting their focus to this weekend's O'Reilly Auto Parts Fall Nationals in Dallas, TX. In a sport where a thousandth of a second can be the difference between winning and losing, the 36 hours of added preparation time were an invaluable opportunity that Johnson was not about to miss.

"Although a rainout truly benefits no one, I simply elected to take an optimistic approach and make the most of the extra day and a half we had at our disposal before Dallas," stated Johnson. "I was back in the shop by late Saturday night, and laid everything out so I could get an early start the next morning. That gave me all of Sunday and Monday to work on things that otherwise I might not have had time for and will have a positive impact on our power level. For example, being in the shop for an extra day should allow me to bring another DRCE 3 up to speed. You could almost say it (the postponement) was a blessing in disguise."

A review of Johnson's record at the Texas Motorplex, site of this weekend's stop on the POWERade Drag Racing circuit, shows little need for improvement, as his approach to racing in the Lone Star State has been quite effective. In twenty-one previous races at the Ennis quarter-mile, "The Professor" has advanced to the championship round eleven times, with his five wins and eleven No. 1 qualifying performances the most among all Pro Stock competitors.

"If you stay in the groove at the Texas Motorplex, it is one of the best racetracks we run on all year," said Johnson. "The only negative aspect of the all-concrete surface is how narrow the groove can be, but that is why they put steering wheels in these race cars.

"But the racing surface is not the deciding factor in determining who will do well at a particular event, mainly because we're all dealing from the same deck of cards. It is more a matter of which team does the best job of adapting to the track's idiosyncrasies. Over the years, the Motorplex has been a facility where the GM Performance Parts team has been quite effective at figuring out what we need to run, which we will naturally look to continue doing this weekend."

Armed with the combination of increased preparation time, a substantial library of tuning notes and an unparalleled record of success at this unique speedplant, Johnson and his talented crew are quietly confident heading into this weekend's event.

"I'm pretty optimistic that we will pick up our performance level in Dallas," said Johnson. "Our engine program has started to show signs of improvement, and the single run we made under fairly adverse conditions in Reading has us enthused about our GM Performance Parts Grand Am. Finally, the added preparation time can only help. All in all, we're seeing some light at the end of the tunnel, and, for once, it's not an oncoming train!"

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Series NHRA
Drivers Warren Johnson