JOHNSON JR. RACES TO FIRST-ROUND EFFORT SUNDAY AT LAS VEGAS LAS VEGAS (April 17, 2005) -- Tommy Johnson Jr. drove his Skoal RacingSM Chevy to a first-round performance Sunday at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, where he equaled his best ...
JOHNSON JR. RACES TO FIRST-ROUND EFFORT SUNDAY AT LAS VEGAS
LAS VEGAS (April 17, 2005) -- Tommy Johnson Jr. drove his Skoal RacingSM Chevy to a first-round performance Sunday at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, where he equaled his best qualifying outing of the season.
Johnson matched his best qualifying position of the young 2005 NHRA season by placing his Chevy flopper in the No. 6 position under difficult race conditions on Saturday afternoon. The Las Vegas event was the first race weekend of '05 where the NHRA race teams faced warm temperatures and a hot, sticky race track, presenting difficult conditions for the crew chiefs and drivers. Johnson used the second best reaction time of the opening round (.073) to race to an early advantage over opponent and fellow Chevy driver Tony Bartone before Johnson's Skoal Racing Funny Car shook the tires, allowing Bartone to drive by and earn the first-round victory.
"That was a really frustrating loss," Johnson said. "We had a good race car, so it's just frustrating to go out in the first round. The car shook the tires. It was just too aggressive I guess. That was the last thing that I expected to happen. We haven't had a tire-shake problem all weekend, but it bit us today. We're a better team than that. I'm just disappointed."
Johnson and the Skoal Racing crew will test on Monday, April 18 at The Strip before returning to the team's Brownsburg, Ind. race shop to regroup for the Fifth annual O'Reilly Thunder Valley Nationals, April 29-May 1, at Bristol Dragway in Bristol, Tenn.