From Bill W, Ryan Northcote Photo
July 14, 2010 – Wayne Johnson put a pair of impressive drives together on Twin Features Night at Knoxville Raceway last Saturday night, garnering a sixth and a fifth place finish. The next two weekends find him in the Pacific Northwest, where he will compete with the Lucas Oil ASCS National Series.
After contemplating whether to run Twin Features Night, the Johnson #77x team decided to get some laps. Coming out late (29th) in qualifications for the 32-car field, Wayne registered a lap that was 16th quick. “We just screwed up trying stuff again,” he says. “We only have one more run here before Nationals, so we’ve been trying some things. We just need to run our heat race setup in qualifying, I guess.”
If qualifying was off, the heat was the opposite. His “heat setup” saw him bolt from the pole, and pull away from everyone. “We were spot on in the heat,” he says. “We changed very little for the first feature.”
Wayne methodically worked his way forward from his 15th starting spot in the first of two features. “It took me awhile to get going,” he explains. “The racetrack was still pretty good. The Goodyears tend to make you miss the track more, but when it’s sticky, they are hitting. That makes everyone fast.”
While many stayed on the cushion, Wayne found the low side of the speedway to his liking and passed several cars that way. He would earn hard-charger honors, going from 15th to 6th at the checkers. “We were rolling the bottom of one and two nice,” says the Knoxville, Iowa driver. “That thing was ripping around there.”
An inverted field in the second feature put Wayne outside of row seven. At the drop of the green, he gained several spots, but the start was called back when Don Droud Jr.’s contact with Brent Antill left debris on the track. “We didn’t need the caution at the start of the second one,” says Wayne. “I ripped by a lot of guys with a jump on the outside.”
The race went green for 19 laps and Wayne rocketed toward the front again. By the time the white flag flew, he was in position for second. That’s when the caution came out one last time, and set up a green, white, checker finish. Many thought Wayne may be in position for the win, but the restart didn’t go as planned. “I was going to go to the bottom, and it looked like (leader) Skip Jackson and (Ian) Madsen were headed there too,” he says. “I just got hung out in the middle when they went high. Driver error kind of cost us there.”
For once, Wayne didn’t feel like he needed the yellow flag. He would lose his momentum and finish fifth. “I really feel without the last caution, we would have been second,” he says. “I felt we were going by Madsen on the low side of one and two. It is what it is.”
Wayne will be shooting for the $10,092 check for winning the 4th Annual Fred Brownfield Memorial on Friday and Saturday at the Grays Harbor Raceway in Elma, Washington. July 23 and 24, the ASCS series will move to Cottage Grove Speedway in Oregon for another doubleheader. “Cottage Grove is one of my favorite places,” says Wayne. “It reminds me of Little Rock. This will give us some downtime as car owners to get everything prepped for the Nationals here at home.”
Wayne is still looking for a permanent home in a sprint car. If you would like to inquire about a partnership with Wayne, you can e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Buy Your ARP Wings from Wayne
Wayne is an ARP Wings dealer located in the Knoxville, Iowa area. Wayne credits the new ARP top wing for his 2009 wins at Little Rock and Cowtown. Contact Wayne for your ARP Wing, as he has some special Holiday deals going! ARP Wings – “When Downforce Matters”!
To learn more about Wayne and the team, log on to www.WayneJohnsonRacing.com!
Lenny Wall asks: Do you see either of your daughters ever getting into a racecar?
Wayne answers: I should take a picture of Paige riding her back around the shop with the #77 ¼ number plate I made her. My oldest daughter (Hunter) has never really been into it. I’m not going to push Paige, because honestly, I think women kind of get a bad rap. If she wants to do it, I’ll help her the best I can. If either does it, it will be the crazy one (Paige).
Got a question for Wayne? Each week, Wayne will answer your questions about “Tech Tips”, or anything that’s on your mind. If you ever wondered what a part on a sprint car is all about, send an e-mail to us at email@example.com, and we may answer it in this section! Put “? for Wayne” in your subject line. He’ll try to keep it clean if you do!
Wayne’s Fast Facts
Wayne was able to race four times at Cottage Grove Speedway last year, and scored a second, a fifth, and a sixth with Harold Main’s #35 and a 16th in 410 competition. The second place run came in Lucas Oil ASCS National competition behind Shane Stewart. Jason Johnson was third, ahead of Roger Crockett and Paul McMahan.
“Wednesday’s with Wayne”
“Wednesday’s With Wayne” is an up close look at the past, present and future of colorful and talented sprint car driver Wayne Johnson. You’ll never know what to expect next with Wayne, so don’t miss us on Wednesdays!
To receive “Wednesday’s with Wayne”, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with “Wayne” in the subject line.
Wayne would like to thank the following for making this possible: E-Rate Complete, Iroquois Poker, Townline Variety, Ohsweken Speedway, Brett Smith Motorsports, FattFro Motorsports, ARP Wings, Butlerbuilt, Hoosier, Schoenfeld Headers, Tim and Gina Doogs and Cooper Racing Enterprises.