Fram Autolite NHRA Nationals
WJ will roll off eleventh
Sonoma, Saturday: GM Performance Parts GTO racer Warren Johnson completed a solid qualifying effort on Saturday, making four competitive passes over the two days at Infineon Raceway, with his 6.648-second, 207.05 mph best earning The Professor the 11th starting position for Sunday’s Fram Autolite Nationals in Sonoma, CA.
Although this will be only the second time Johnson will start outside the top half of the field in the California wine country (with the previous instance coming in 1989), WJ’s confidence for race day was buoyed by his final qualifying attempt, a strong 6.669-second, 207.18 mph run in the heat of the afternoon that was among the best in the Pro Stock category for that session.
“The tune-up calls we made today were actually for tomorrow’s conditions. We believe tomorrow’s temperatures will escalate by an equivalent amount as they did between yesterday and today, so we used today’s attempts to work on a direction for the conditions we expect for race day, and it seems to have paid off based on this afternoon’s run.
“Although we didn’t exactly shine in the morning session, with the 11th quickest pass of the round, our GM Performance Parts GTO came back with the fifth quickest time in the afternoon run, where conditions were the most like what is forecast for tomorrow. We certainly would have preferred to have lane choice for the first round, but what little difference there is between the lanes can be made up. In fact, if tuned properly for that lane, the performance can actually be identical, so it’s just a matter of adapting to whatever lane we’re put in.
“We’ll evaluate the track first thing in the morning, take everything into account, and make the necessary adjustments we need to have a long day, doing what we can to improve our standing for the next round of the Countdown.”
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