Johnson the show maker, again 29 March, 2004 -- American Sensation Jason Johnson was the show maker in his Aussiefast Transport/STP over the weekend as the Disbury Family Racing competed at Adelaide's Speedway City on Friday followed by the...
Johnson the show maker, again
29 March, 2004 -- American Sensation Jason Johnson was the show maker in his Aussiefast Transport/STP over the weekend as the Disbury Family Racing competed at Adelaide's Speedway City on Friday followed by the South Australian Sprintcar Championship at Murray Bridge on Saturday night.
The last time that Johnson raced at each venue he stood in victory lane and once again he had the pace to be one of the front runners.
A second heat rollover blemished his card on Friday night but with the great work of the crew his car was repaired in time for the dash where he finished runner-up to Max Dumesny.
Starting on the outside front row Johnson slotted into second spot during the early running behind Dumesny shadowing his every move.
Racing on the high line Johnson made several attempts to take over the lead but his momentum was hampered by lapped traffic bouncing up into his tracks on more than one occasion.
Just after half race distance Johnson had a sneak peak at the lead but it too was to no avail as the caution lights were displayed.
Johnson held on for second behind Dumesny. Australian Champion, Robbie Farr was third.
"The car was real good all night long. I just messed up in that second heat but the guys replaced the front end and the wings to get me back out there for the dash," said Johnson.
"I got a couple of good runs on Max but everytime I seem to almost get by him the yellows would come out or a lapped car would run high into my line."
Starting from the pole in his first heat at the State Title many would have thought it would be a Johnson benefit. However some over zealous officials made sure that was going to happen.
Johnson was put to the rear for a jumped start and was then disqualified from the event when they also deemed that he had jumped the start from the final row on the grid.
"When the guy next to me says that I wasn't jumping and it was simply a case of my engine had the better pick up off the line what am I supposed to do wait for the field to pass me?" questioned Johnson after the race.
In an on track interview later in the night Johnson went on to say "I've had a great time in Australia this year met some great people actually I think the only person who doesn't like me is the steward," much to the agreement of the crowd.
Following a fourth place in his second heat race Johnson started from the 16th and final position in the Championship Final.
Once again Johnson was the show maker charging through the pack to be just outside the top 10 within a matter of laps when Trevor Green had a steering box break ending his night and bringing about the first stoppage.
With every move Johnson made towards the front the entire Murray Bridge crowd, including the corporate area that had a healthy contingent of DFR corporate partners in attendance, cheered as one.
At the front of the pack Dumesny, Farr and Luke Dillon were battling for the lead but Johnson was coming and coming fast.
When Leif Ahlfors rolled with 14-laps remaining the red light was displayed again and as Johnson climbed out of his Aussiefast Transport/STP Eagle a fuel fitting broke. It was only the quick thinking of crew chief Dave Ferral and the assistance of the crew that enabled Johnson to continue.
At the restart Johnson was closing in on the leaders to be in third with a handful of laps remaining all over the rear bumper of Farr.
Dumesny crossed the line first ahead of Farr and Johnson. This third place finish was Johnson's seventh Top 5 finish in a row and 15th for the summer.
"Once again we had plenty of car speed but we need to start at the front to beat these guys up here," said Johnson
"It's been great to be back here and I can't wait until November when I am back in Australia again. All year our car has had the pace but we just haven't had the luck when we really needed it."