After attending the KISS concert on Saturday night, Kurt Johnson arrived at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sunday ready to rock his way into the ACDelco Las Vegas Nationals winner's circle. In addition to flying the legendary rock...
After attending the KISS concert on Saturday night, Kurt Johnson arrived at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sunday ready to rock his way into the ACDelco Las Vegas Nationals winner's circle. In addition to flying the legendary rock group's color on his ACDelco/KISS Cavalier, and having band members Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley in attendance, Johnson had the added incentive of racing in his sponsor's event in front of nearly 1,500 employees and customers who came out on Sunday.
Starting from the third position, Johnson opened his pursuit of victory in strong fashion, defeating Gene Wilson with one of the best runs of the round, a solid 6.891 second run with a top speed of 200.71 mph. After eliminating Taylor Lastor In the second round, Johnson used a solid startling reaction time to defeat a quicker Jason Line on a hole shot in the semifinals to advance to his ninth final round of the season.
Facing recently-crowned Pro Stock champion Greg Anderson in the final, Johnson knew he would need a nearly perfect run to score his fifth national event win of the season. Responding to the challenge, Johnson welded Anderson to the starting line, leaving over three hundredths of a second ahead.
Powering down track, Johnson made his quickest pass of the weekend at 6.878 seconds with a top speed of 200.56 mph. Unfortunately, his gallant effort came up seven thousandths of a second shy of victory, as Anderson recorded the quickest elapsed time of the weekend at 6.837 seconds to just edge Johnson at the finish line stripe.
"We did our best to win the race today and just fell a little short," said Johnson. "Even though that was our best run of the event in the final, it did move around a little bit in the middle of the track. It just seemed like all weekend long, both in qualifying and eliminations, no matter what lane I was in, the other one was a little bit better. I didn't have lane choice in the final, and that might have been the key."
"I would really have like to win for Scott Mackie, Sue Seaglund, Tom Paci and all the ACDelco employees and customers who spent the time and effort to come out, watch us race and pull for us. It was an awesome feeling on Friday night when we drove in front of the stands and everyone was cheering us on."
"It also would have been fun to carry the KISS colors back into the winner's circle. We went to the concert last night, and Gene (Simmons) and Paul (Stanley) were here today. The entire promotion worked out great."
"Still, the ACDelco/KISS Cavalier ran well, we put on a good show for our sponsor, we were the runner-up, and increased our lead over third place. All in all, it wasn't a bad weekend."