Johnson Steers MoparÂ® Dodge Avenger to Semis Debut at 50th Annual NHRA Winternationals Pomona, Calif. (Feb. 14, 2010) -- Team MoparÂ® NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series driver Allen Johnson wrapped up his debut weekend in his brand new 2010...
Johnson Steers Mopar® Dodge Avenger to Semis Debut at 50th Annual NHRA Winternationals
Pomona, Calif. (Feb. 14, 2010) -- Team Mopar® NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series driver Allen Johnson wrapped up his debut weekend in his brand new 2010 Pro Stock Mopar Dodge Avenger in promising fashion, powering his new ride to a semifinals result at the 50th Annual Kragen O'Reilly NHRA Winternationals. Johnson claimed his 190th career round win during the event and is now third in the Pro Stock point standings following the season-opening action at Auto Club Dragway at Pomona, Calif.
Johnson started his Mopar Dodge Avenger No. 4, gaining three bonus points overall during qualifying. The Greeneville, Tenn., native knocked off Steve Spiess in the opening round on the strength of a 6.637/209.49 run. Johnson dialed up another solid mark in his quarterfinals defeat of Roger Brogdon, clocking a 6.634/209.20 pass to collect career round win No. 190.
Johnson drew a formidable matchup in the semifinals--reigning Pro Stock champion Mike Edwards. To make matters even more difficult, the J&J Racing driver and team owner lacked lane choice. Johnson's run of 6.645/209.95 was stout but was not enough to best Edwards' 6.615/210.11 pass.
Although a bit short in his quest for a first NHRA Winternationals win, Johnson was nonetheless energized by his impressive semifinals appearance in the Mopar Dodge Avenger's competition debut.
"We're tickled to death," said Johnson. "We made three good runs today. We even made a decent run in that right lane, which gives everyone fits. The new Mopar Dodge Avenger has got a bigger window than our previous car, and it's faster. We really have got something to work with.
"I felt like my driving was decent all day. I'm right about where I want to be. I think we reached all of our goals today in the new car's debut, short of winning the race. It gives us some momentum going to Phoenix, and we'll take it. We'll head there and see if we can go one better and go to the final."
Vinnie Deceglie qualified No. 7 in his first race in his HEMI®-fueled Dodge Avenger. The Southern California native was dealt a holeshot loss in a first-round fight with Ronnie Humphrey. His quicker and faster 6.647/208.71 pass was negated by his slower reaction time, .085 to Humphrey's .033 (.000 is perfect).
Next up for Johnson and his fellow Mopar-powered Dodge Avenger drivers is the NHRA Arizona Nationals, Feb. 19--21, at Firebird International Raceway in Phoenix, Ariz.
-source: team mopar