ALLEN JOHNSON TO MATCH RACE AT MOUNTAIN PARK DRAGWAY
NHRA world champion Pro Stock driver Allen Johnson has made his return to racing this season.
Johnson has been trying his hand in the Factory Stock Showdown class and now he’s expanding his schedule – at least for one weekend.
Johnson will match race Sept. 8 in his 2015 Dodge Challenger at Mountain Park Dragway in Clay City, Ky., as part of Mopar’s at the Mountain event Sept. 7-9.
“Scotty Richardson (the track owner/operator at Mountain Park Dragway) contacted me about coming up and racing a local (competitor) with our Factory Stock challenge car and we are going to do that,” said Johnson, who won his Pro Stock world title in 2012. “It will be a fun deal. This is a big huge event he (Richardson) has up there and he asked me to come and be Mr. Mopar for the weekend and we are gaining on this deal (competing in the Factory Stock Showdown) and we thought this will give us a little extra testing. We are hoping to pack the stands with Mopar fans.”
Johnson said his match race will be the best two out of three against a local racer on Sept. 8.
“This Factory Stock Showdown has been fun,” he said. “We are gaining on it. The Dodges at Norwalk (Ohio), we qualified as the top four cars and we are gaining on it and having a little fun.”
According to Johnson, he will compete in the NHRA’s Factory Stock Showdown at the U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis (Aug. 29-Sept. 3), and St. Louis (Sept. 21-23). He has competed in the class at Gainesville, Fla., Charlotte, N.C., Bristol, Tenn., and Norwalk, Ohio.
“This has been enough to keep us busy and my dad (Roy) he’s really getting a good time out of it learning this supercharge engines which we have never run with,” Allen said. “He’s working his tail off on it trying to get that combination better and it is enough to keep him busy. They also have a race in Dallas, but I doubt we go to Dallas. If we were in the points battle we might, but we got sort of a late start and we will probably not go to Dallas and concentrate next year on winning the championship. It’s a lot of fun.”
Jeff Teuton and Kevin Helms ran the Dodge Challenger Johnson is now campaigning.
“We had to modify the car for this class and we are just continuously upgrading it,” Johnson said. “The Factory Stock Showdown class, these cars make a lot of power, and were having to do everything to use the power.”
Johnson acknowledged driving in the Factory Stock Showdown has been a work in progress for him.
“The biggest difference is cutting a light with a brake, instead of a clutch,” Johnson said. “The car is quite a bit slower than a Pro Stock car, but it has its own challenges. You have to shift twice with an automatic shifter and the biggest thing is cutting a light with having to apply enough brake pressure to hold it on the starting line instead of just 20 thousandths clutch. You have a three-inch travel with a brake instead of 20 thousandths with a clutch in a Pro Stock car. It has been a challenge for me to learn how to drive it, but we are really enjoying it.”
Johnson competed in the NHRA Pro Stock ranks from 1996-2017. He competed in 504 career races, winning 27 times and claiming 32 runner-up finishes.