Johnson Qualifies No. 4 at NHRA Gatornationals, Advances to Semis at Delayed NHRA Arizona Nationals Gainesville, Fla. (March 13, 2010) -- Team MoparÂ® driver Allen Johnson put together a successful outing today at Gainesville Raceway, qualifying...
Johnson Qualifies No. 4 at NHRA Gatornationals, Advances to Semis at Delayed NHRA Arizona Nationals
Gainesville, Fla. (March 13, 2010) -- Team Mopar® driver Allen Johnson put together a successful outing today at Gainesville Raceway, qualifying No. 4 in his Pro Stock Mopar Dodge Avenger for the 41st Annual Tire Kingdom NHRA Gatornationals and advancing to the semifinals in the postponed NHRA Arizona Nationals.
The first qualifying session today doubled as the quarterfinals of the NHRA Arizona Nationals. Johnson faced Jason Line in a rematch of the 2009 Gatornationals final, but this time it was Johnson who emerged on the winning end, recording a 6.559/211.16 pass to Line's 9.900/92.48 run. The mark also lifted Johnson up to No. 4 in Gatornationals qualifying.
The J&J Racing driver and Greeneville, Tenn. native drew defending NHRA Pro Stock champ Mike Edwards in the semifinals for the second straight event with, unfortunately, the same result. Johnson's Mopar Dodge shook the tires soon after takeoff and he watched as Edwards drove away for the win.
Despite the setback, Johnson remained encouraged by his two consecutive semifinals appearances to start the season in his new Mopar Dodge Avenger. He'll look to steer his HEMI®-powered Pro Stocker to a first career NHRA Gatornationals win tomorrow.
"It's a great start, two straight semifinals in this brand new Mopar Dodge," said Johnson. "But we've got to get up and down the track to be competitive. We'll take it and build on it tomorrow, hopefully learn from it and go one more round.
"I always feel good at Gainesville. We finished runner-up here last year and it's always an upbeat atmosphere. I feel confident, so we'll see if we can get in that final again."
Johnson will go head-to-head with Shane Gray in the first round of eliminations. Mopar-powered Dodge Pro Stock driver and No. 8 qualifier Vinnie Deceglie will face Ronnie Humphrey in opening stanza, while V. Gaines, who posted his Dodge Avenger No. 12, will battle with Rodger Brogdon.