Team Mopar®’s Johnson in Countdown Mode Entering Sonoma

By Auto News Log • July 16th, 2010

Allen Johnson has sights set on second career final-round appearance, first win at Fram Autolite NHRA Nationals

Team Mopar® driver Allen Johnson is in preparation mode for the Countdown to 1, the six-race playoffs that will determine the 2010 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series Pro Stock champion. Three races remain in the NHRA regular season and Johnson’s goal is to fine-tune the setup on his Mopar Dodge Avenger for the title run, beginning this weekend at the Fram Autolite NHRA Nationals, July 16–18.

“Right now the Mopar/J&J Racing team is just looking at the rest of the races remaining in the regular season as preparation for the Countdown,” said Johnson, currently second in the NHRA Pro Stock point standings. “We have to go out for these races and just act like we are trying to win the championship.

“The time is flying by. I really can’t believe we only have nine races left. We’re looking forward to getting into this home stretch. We had a tough outing at Seattle and hopefully we can rebound from that at Sonoma and get mad and win the race.”

Johnson, a native of Greeneville, Tenn., has three runner-up finishes on the season and has advanced to at least the semifinals in nine of 14 events thus far. The J&J Racing driver and team owner has one previous final-round appearance at Sonoma, scoring a 2000 runner-up finish at Infineon Raceway. Johnson would like nothing better than to pop a little champagne in wine country in celebration of his first win of the ’10 campaign.

“Sonoma is always one of my favorite places to go,” Johnson said. “It’s got a really good track surface. I feel like we’ll continue what we’ve been doing in the last few races, like at Norwalk, and be in the top two or three cars. Hopefully we’ve got good notes for our setup. We’d like to finally put the Mopar Dodge in winner’s circle as we gear up for the championship chase.”

Johnson’s Statistics of Note

At Infineon Raceway

Advanced to the quarterfinals in 2009 at Sonoma Scored a runner-up finish at Sonoma in 2000, falling to Kurt Johnson

2010 Season

• Currently ranked second in the NHRA Full Throttle Pro Stock point standings
• Has a 25-14 round win record through 14 events
• Advanced to the final round at the NHRA event in Norwalk, Ohio, his third final-round appearance of the season and 20th of his career
• Banked his ninth career No. 1 Qualifier Award at the NHRA Bristol race
• Scored his second final-round appearance of the season at the NHRA event in Topeka
• Earned his eighth career No. 1 Qualifier Award at the NHRA Atlanta event
• Has advanced to at least the semifinals in nine of 14 events this season
• Claimed his 200th career round win at the NHRA St. Louis race
• Banked his first final-round appearance of the year at the NHRA Houston event
• Advanced to four straight semifinals to start the season in his new Mopar Dodge Avenger

2009 Season

• Clinched a spot in the 2009 NHRA Countdown to 1 six-race playoffs
• Captured two wins, at Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals in Denver and O’Reilly NHRA Summer Nationals in Topeka
• Finished seventh in NHRA Full Throttle Pro Stock point standings
• Made three finals appearances, scoring a runner-up finish at NHRA Gatornationals
• Captured seventh career No. 1 Qualifier Award at NHRA event in Seattle, reaching semis
• Made eight semifinals appearances
• Posted a 30-20 round win record for the season

2008 Season

• Finished seventh in NHRA Pro Stock standings
• One of only 10 drivers to qualify for NHRA Countdown to 1 six-race playoffs
• Won K&N Horsepower Challenge bonus event at Norwalk, recording perfect .000 reaction time to defeat Greg Anderson for victory
• Powered to three No. 1 Qualifier Awards
• Made eight semifinals appearances
• Posted two straight runner-up finishes at Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals and Schuck’s Auto Supply NHRA Nationals
• Racked up 28-24 round win record

2007 Season

• Finished career-best fourth in NHRA Pro Stock point standings
• One of only four Pro Stock drivers to qualify for inaugural NHRA Countdown to 1 playoff
• Claimed win at Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals in Denver

2006 Season

• Finished sixth in NHRA Pro Stock standings, scoring win at Seattle

Career

• Qualified for Countdown to 1 in each of first three years since NHRA adopted playoff format in 2007
• Claimed seven career NHRA Full Throttle Pro Stock wins
• Claimed more than 200 career round wins
• Has a career best elapsed time of 6.549-seconds and a career best speed of 211.73 mph
• Recorded 20 career final round appearances
• Competed in 300th race at 2009 NHRA St. Louis event
• Scored second career win at Atlanta in 2002 and finished eighth in point standings
• Seized first career win in 1999 at Richmond and went on to claim first top 10 finish in standings
• Made NHRA Pro Stock debut in 1996, driving a Mopar-powered Dodge Avenger

Fram Autolite NHRA Nationals

The Fram Autolite NHRA Nationals is scheduled to take place July 16–18 at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. Two hours of qualifying coverage will air on Saturday, July 17, beginning at 10 p.m. (EDT) on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD. Three hours of eliminations coverage will air on Sunday, July 18, beginning at 6 p.m. (EDT) on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD. For more information on the NHRA, log on to http://www.nhra.com.

Mopar Brand

Mopar is Chrysler Group LLC’s service, parts and customer-care brand.
Mopar distributes approximately 280,000 parts and accessories in more than 90 countries and is the source for all original-equipment parts for Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep® and Ram Truck vehicles. Mopar parts are unique in that they are engineered with the same teams that create factory-authorized vehicle specifications for Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge and Ram vehicles—a direct connection that no other aftermarket parts company can provide.

When Chrysler bought Dodge in 1928, the need for a dedicated parts maker, supplier and distribution system to support the growing enterprise led to the formation of the Chrysler Motor Parts Corporation (CMPC) in 1929.

Mopar (a simple contraction of the words MOtor and PARts) was trademarked for a line of antifreeze products in 1937. It also was widely used as a moniker for the CMPC. The Mopar brand made its mark in the 1960s – the muscle-car era. The former Chrysler Corporation built race-ready Dodge and Plymouth “package cars” equipped with special high-performance parts. Mopar carried a line of “special parts” for super-stock drag racers and developed its racing parts division, called Mopar Performance Parts, in order to enhance speed and handling for vehicles both on the road or at the track.

Mopar-first Features

Mopar has introduced numerous industry-first features including:

• Vehicle-information apps: introduced the industry’s first smartphone vehicle-information application, a new channel of communication with consumers
• Electronic owner manuals: first to introduce traditional owner manuals in a DVD and brief user-guide format
• FLO TV: first to offer live, mobile television
• WiFi: first to offer customers the ability to make their vehicle a wireless hot spot
• WiTECH: first to support vehicle diagnosis and software updates leveraging off-the-shelf personal computers and a dedicated wireless tool network

Source: Chrysler

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