WJ's Final Attempt Scores the Seventh Starting Spot in Topeka After struggling to find their hot weather tune-up in their earlier attempts, Warren Johnson and the GM Performance Parts GXP Racing team entered the fourth and final qualifying...
WJ's Final Attempt Scores the Seventh Starting Spot in Topeka
After struggling to find their hot weather tune-up in their earlier attempts, Warren Johnson and the GM Performance Parts GXP Racing team entered the fourth and final qualifying session of the O'Reilly Summer Nationals in Topeka, KS in the tenuous sixteenth position. With 23 cars vying for a spot on Sunday's final eliminations ladder, Johnson knew improvement would be necessary in order to guarantee their participation on race day.
Despite running in the heat of the afternoon, WJ quickly allayed any concerns by posting the quickest and fastest time of the session at 6.739-seconds, 205.51 mph to move into the top half of the field, securing the seventh position. This represents Johnson's sixth top half start of the 2008 season (in nine races) and 19th top half start in 25 races at Heartland Park Topeka.
"For the last two days, we've been searching for this GM Performance Parts GXP's sweet spot, and I think we finally found a little sugar on that last run. Our first run yesterday afternoon was fair, placing us third. The weather improved over the next three sessions, and we honestly just missed the set-up on our next two attempts.
"Fortunately, we went back to some known commodities on our final run, and it produced the results we were looking for from the beginning. That gives us a direction for tomorrow, when the weather is supposed to be a clone of what we had today.
"In addition, the relatively low car count at this race has prevented the surface from getting really torn up in terms of losing the rubber on the starting line. With both the racetrack and weather being for all practical purposes identical, combined with the fact that we should be able to hone in on it a little further, we should be in good shape for tomorrow."