Route 66 Raceway
Line Seeking Clean, Consistent Performance in Joliet
Most teams in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series would be thrilled with the results produced by Jason Line and his Summit Racing team in the first ten races of the 2011 season. After all, they have consistently been among the best in qualifying, with eight starts among the top four positions, including No. 1 qualifying performances in Charlotte and Englishtown. In addition, they have also been solid on race day, with their three wins pacing the ultra competitive Pro Stock category, allowing the Mooresville, N.C. resident to come into this weekend’s O’Reilly Auto Parts Route 66 Nationals in Joliet, Ill. as the leader in the championship standings.
However, with over half the season remaining, including the six-race Countdown to One championship playoffs, Line simply considers his current position as a work in progress, with work to be done and improvements to be made in order to return to the winner’s circle and propel him to his second title.
“We got off to a hot start, but lately we just haven’t shown the competitive consistency we need to win, which is something we are working on,” said Line. “It all comes down to every person on this team doing a better job on race day, making sure to not make any mistakes, because to win in Pro Stock, you have to almost be perfect.
“Our Summit Racing Pontiac has been pretty good in qualifying all year, but in the last few races we haven’t been able to finish the job on Sunday. Although it may take a little bit of time and a lot of hard work to get back where we want to be, we know we have all the right tools. Besides, there isn’t one person on this KB Racing team who isn’t dedicated to getting the job done, so I’m confident we’ll get there, and it can’t happen soon enough.”
Fortunately, the next stop on drag racing’s premiere circuit is one where the 2006 champion has excelled. Located just outside of the Chicago area in the town of Joliet, Route 66 Raceway is a multipurpose motorsports facility which first hosted an NHRA national event in 1999. Since making his Pro Stock Prairie State debut in 2003, Line has won three-quarters of his elimination rounds, advancing to the final round five times (including last year), winning three. Although downplaying the effect previous successes would have on his chances for this weekend, he admits there are some positives.
“Route 66 Raceway has been a good track for me, so consequently I like going there,” said Line. “Of course, having won in the past offers no guarantee that you’ll be successful there in the future, but I still feel better about going there than to a track where I have yet to win, and confidence still plays a key role in a team’s performance.
“It’s also a great facility, ranking right up there with some of the best we go to throughout the season, so you naturally look forward to racing there. The racing surface is a good one, and although we may have an extra variable thrown in this year with the two night qualifying sessions, it still all comes down to doing a better job than your competition.
“I feel good about our program. We’re not quite the team we want to be yet, but we are still competitive and capable of winning any race we enter. Most importantly, I feel like we are learning, heading in a positive direction that will pay off down the road when we need it to. But for now, our focus will be on doing our jobs to the best of our abilities, keeping any errors to a minimum and doing whatever is necessary to get one of our Summit Racing Pontiacs in the winner’s circle.”
By: kb racing