SONOMA, Calif. (July 29, 2017) – At most racetracks on the circuit, having lane choice during eliminations is of utmost importance for raceday success and Marathon Petroleum/J&J Racing’s Allen Johnson will start his raceday from the top half at the 30th annual NHRA Sonoma Nationals.
On Friday, Johnson began qualifying at Sonoma Raceway with a solid 6.593-second pass at 210.05 mph. As the temperatures dropped for the evening session, Johnson and crew chief Adam Hornberger capitalized on cooler conditions and bettered their performance with a 6.581, 210.64.
Saturday, the first session of the day proved to be difficult for teams to get any power to hold on the racetrack but Johnson proved why he has had so much success in the Pro Stock class when he was one of the only cars to get down the track with a stout 6.584, 211.03. Johnson closed out qualifying with his quickest of the weekend so far - 6.578, 210.41.
“Our Marathon Petroleum/J&J Racing team is trying some new things for our long-term performance right now,” Johnson said. “I think we have a chance at it tomorrow if we can execute and get a few lucky breaks our way. In the last session today, we were only a little over one hundredth of a second behind them and that’s the closest we’ve been all year.”
No. 8 Johnson will have lane choice over No. 9 Jeg Coughlin Jr. in the first round.
“When you have a matchup against Jeg first round, it’s going to be a tuner and driver combination that will win,” he added. “He can be tough on the tree and usually runs well. I will go up there and plan to be 20 or better on the tree. The stuff we are trying is paying dividends so I think we can do well tomorrow.”
Allen Johnson Sonoma Nationals Stats:
Q1: 6.593, 210.05
Q2: 6.581, 210.64
Q3: 6.584, 211.03
Q4: 6.578, 210.41
Qualified: No. 8
First Round Opponent: Jeg Coughlin Jr.