Team Mopar's Allen Johnson to Add Johnny Gray to J&J Racing Pro Stock Team in '09; Johnson appreciates the benefits of a two-car team Center Line, Mich. -- Team Mopar NHRA POWERade Pro Stock driver Allen Johnson announced today that Dodge...
Team Mopar's Allen Johnson to Add Johnny Gray to J&J Racing Pro Stock Team in '09; Johnson appreciates the benefits of a two-car team
Center Line, Mich. -- Team Mopar NHRA POWERade Pro Stock driver Allen Johnson announced today that Dodge Stratus R/T Pro Stock pilot Johnny Gray will join Johnson's J&J Racing team for the 2009 NHRA campaign. Johnson campaigns the Mopar/J&J Racing Dodge Stratus R/T.
Johnson's team and Gray's S.K.I. Racing crew will pit side-by-side in 2009. Mark Ingersoll will continue as crew chief for J& Racing and will also serve as an advisor for Gray's team and his crew chief, Craig Hankinson. Roy Johnson, [Allen] Johnson's father, will serve as engine tuner and builder.
"Johnny and I will work to make both cars identical, so we can get the most advantage by sharing data with each other," said [Allen] Johnson. "I think Johnny's a real talented driver and I welcome him aboard the J&J Racing team for next year."
Gray is no stranger to Mopar power, having campaigned with a Mopar HEMI engine throughout the 2008 season. He has had a long and successful racing career, having driven everything from sprint cars to Nitro Funny Cars. He's also competed in seven different NHRA eliminator categories. Gray will own his Dodge Stratus R/T Pro Stock car but will now fall under the J&J Racing umbrella.
"This is exciting for us," expressed Gray. "Aligning with Allen is a tremendous opportunity. Allen and his dad, Roy, have the talent and experience that will bring my team to the top. They are a first-class operation and I am proud to be associated with them."
[Allen] Johnson has experience with the benefits of the two-car team approach. His J&J Racing crew teamed with Don Schumacher Racing driver Richie Stevens Jr. during the 2007 season to great success. The Greeneville, Tenn. native was one of only four NHRA Pro Stock drivers to qualify for the 2007 NHRA Countdown to 1 playoffs. J&J Racing also supplied the Mopar HEMI engines utilized by Justin Humphreys and Vinnie Deceglie in 2008 during their part-time stints in Dodge Stratus R/Ts.
"We of course had the part-time relationship with Vinnie this year, and then the six-race deal with Justin," said [Allen] Johnson. "That just provided dividends for us, as far as extra dollars to use for R&D as well as extra track time to try different chassis configurations."
[Allen] Johnson added, "We sort of forgot how that [a two-car team] helped us a lot after we lost Schumacher following last year. This is an effort to provide all those things, to help us at the track, help at testing and also in testing our Mopar HEMI engines. It allows Dad to try a lot of different things, a lot of different set-ups."
The J&J Racing team will also continue to provide Mopar HEMI engines and share data and testing info on a part-time basis in 2009 with the Dodge Stratus R/T owned by Nick Mitsos and driven by Decegelie. All three cars driven by [Allen] Johnson, Gray and Deceglie will feature chassis provided by RJ Race Cars.