COMMERCE, Ga. (May 6, 2017) – Allen Johnson and the Marathon Petroleum/J&J Racing Dodge Dart team have smiles from ear to ear after qualifying a season high No. 9 at the 37th annual NHRA Southern Nationals.
After qualifying got cancelled before any runs were made at Atlanta Dragway on Friday for the Pro Stock class, Johnson knew capitalizing on Saturday’s qualifying would be crucial.
“When you only get two runs, you gotta be perfect in qualifying just like you have to be on raceday,” Johnson said. “You gotta be more focused.”
On Saturday, the team was greeted with sunshine and no clouds in sight. On the first run, Johnson clocked in with a 6.623-second pass at 208.62 mph which put him in the No. 9 spot. In the second and final qualifying session, Johnson posted a consistent 6.652, 208.78 up on the scoreboard at the Commerce, Ga.-based track.
After the second qualifying sessions, Johnson remained in the No. 9 spot. That No. 9 position granted him a first round matchup against No. 8 Vincent Nobile in the first round.
“We tried to start today just how we ended in Charlotte and build on it,” he smiled. “We had a plan for this weekend to stay very close to what we did in Charlotte and not change a whole lot. I’m really excited about being No. 9. It just psyches the heck out of me.”
ALLEN JOHNSON, MARATHON PETROLEUM/J&J RACING DODGE DART
Qualified: No. 9
JOHNSON vs. Vincent Nobile
Saturday: 6.623-seconds, 208.62 mph (Session 1); 6.652, 208.78 (Session 2)