Friday, July 27, 2007

Sonoma: Team Mopar preview

Racing series NHRA
Date 2007-07-27

Johnson on a roll as he heads for the Fram Autolite Nationals, Stevens hopes to gain momentum with a good showing at the Fram Autolite Nationals in California

* Allen Johnson seeks more success after back-to-back finals' appearances

* Richie Stevens Jr. looking for redemption after red lighting at Bristol

Center Line, Mich. -- Allen Johnson and Richie Stevens Jr., Team Mopar®'s NHRA POWERade Pro Stock duo, head for the West Coast this weekend for the Fram Autolite Nationals at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. Johnson has posted back-to-back finals appearances during the last two races while Stevens, the No. 10 qualifier at Bristol, will seek redemption after red lighting in the first round of eliminations.

Johnson seeks more success after back-to-back finals Team Mopar driver Johnson, pilot of the Mopar/J&J Racing Dodge Stratus R/T, has been on a roll lately as he has posted back-to-back finals appearances in the last two NHRA events. Riding this hot streak, Johnson is poised to clinch a spot in the Countdown to the Championship with a good showing at the Infineon Raceway this week.

At last week's event, Johnson's matchups in the eliminations not only presented a problem for him, but for the folks covering the race as well. After all, when Allen Johnson defeats Warren Johnson in the second round, then goes up against and defeats Kurt Johnson in the third, well, that's a lot of Johnsons to keep straight. But for Allen, that's just all background noise. "I don't pay any attention to who's next to me," he said. "I only want to make sure I'm first to the finish line."

Johnson also realized that you always need a little bit of luck to make it all the way through to the finals. He said, "We've been fast and consistent all year, but it's only lately that we've started to get some breaks, too. With Warren and Kurt red lighting, it looks like we're starting to get some things to go our way finally. The key will be to keep it going this week at Infineon. It's all starting to come together just in time for the Countdown and we plan on being there when the smoke clears."

Stevens Jr. hopes to get back on track at Infineon It was a week that began with so much promise but also ended with disappointment as Richie Steven's Jr. was unable to advance in the Pro Stock standings. After posting the 10th best qualifying time on Saturday, Stevens figured he was ready to pull off some upsets once the elimination rounds started. Unfortunately, he was a little too quick on the trigger and red lighted in his first race.

With the race at Infineon coming up this week, Stevens knows he has the car and crew to make a great showing at one of his favorite tracks. "It's all coming together at the right time," Stevens said. "If I just do my job, the results will take care of themselves."

Fram Autolite Nationals Event Details
The Fram Autolite Nationals is scheduled for July 27--29 at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. Qualifying coverage will air on Saturday, July 28 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. (EDT) on ESPN2. Three hours of eliminations coverage will be broadcast on Sunday, July 29 starting at 8 p.m. (EDT) on ESPN2.

-credit: mopar/dsr

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