Jason Johnson tops 360 poll

Jason Johnson Top Story
Jason Johnson (Serena Dalhamer photo)
Jason Johnson (Serena Dalhamer photo)

From Bob Baker

Knoxville, IA — (January 15, 2015) — Jason Johnson of Eunice, Louisiana, was voted the 2014 “Driver of the Year” by the North American 360 Sprint Car Poll voting panel of media members, promoters, sanctioning officials and manufacturers for the sixth time. Johnson, the American Sprint Car Series (ASCS) national tour champion, earned eight (8) of the eighteen (18) first-place ballots cast in the year-end poll. Jason & Bobbi Johnson earned their fourth “Team of the Year” award as well.

Those drivers ranked second through fifth, respectively, are Jeff Swindell of Tennessee, Brad Loyet of Missouri, Brian Brown of Missouri, and Sam Hafertepe, Jr., of Texas. Rounding out the ‘top ten’ for the season are Aaron Ruetzel, Johnny Herrera, California Sprint Car Civil War Series champion Shane Golobic, United Sprint Car Series (USCS) champion Terry Gray and Empire Super Sprints (ESS) champion Steve Poirier, respectively. In addition to Jason Johnson, others receiving first-place votes were Jeff Swindell (two), Brad Loyet (two), Brian Brown (three), Shane Golobic (one), Derek Hagar (one) and United Racing Company (URC) champion Davey Franek (one).

Three-time Upper Midwest Sprintcar Series (UMSS) feature winner Ryan Bowers of Minnesota earned the North American 360 Sprint Car Poll “Rookie of the Year” title in his first full season of winged 360-cubic-inch sprint car competition. Due to a tie in the voting, Jack & Bonnie Elam of J&J Auto Racing and Chuck Merrill of Maxim Chassis will share the “Builder/Manufacturer of the Year” honors for 2014.

In addition, the team of Kendra Jacobs & Steve Post of MRN Radio’s “Winged Nation” internet show will receive the “Media Members of the Year” award. Glenn Styres of the Ohsweken Speedway in Ontario, Canada, earned his seventh “Promoter of the Year” award, while 2012 “Rookie of the Year” Christopher Bell of Oklahoma will again receive the “Wild Card Award” for his exciting ‘360’ sprint car performances in 2014.

The North American 360 Sprint Car Poll is an annual awards program of the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum Foundation, Inc., of Knoxville, Iowa. All awards will be distributed in 2015 at tracks throughout North America. The awards were announced on the third day of the Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Midget Nationals in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Final 2014 North American 360 Sprint Car Poll

rank, driver (first place votes), hometown, state/province, points

1., Jason Johnson (8), Eunice, LA, 1035

2., Jeff Swindell (2), Memphis, TN, 547

3., Brad Loyet (2), Sunset Hills, MO, 506

4., Brian Brown (3), Grain Valley, MO, 320

5., Sam Hafertepe, Jr., Sunnyvale, TX, 293

6., Aaron Ruetzel, Clute, TX, 227

7., Johnny Herrera, Albuquerque, NM, 205

8., Shane Golobic (1), Fremont, CA, 132

9., Terry Gray, Bartlett, TN, 104

10., Steve Poirier, St. Mathieu de Beloeil, QC, CAN, 99

11., Tim Crawley, Little Rock, AR, 91

12., Randy Hannagan, San Jose, CA, 81

13., Tony Bruce, Jr., Liberal, KS, 72

14., Christopher Bell, Norman, OK, 69

15., Derek Hagar (1), Marion, AR, 61

16., Seth Bergman, Snohomish, WA, 58

17., Andy Forsberg, Auburn, CA, 50

18., Jared Zimbardi, Little Valley, NY, 49

19., Rico Abreu, St. Helena, CA, 46

20., Davey Franek (1), Wantage, NJ, 45

21., Joe Beaver, Knoxville, IA, 39

22., Jonathan Cornell, Sedalia, MO, 37

23., Mark Smith, Mechanicsburg, PA, 33

24., Jon Agan, Knoxville, IA, 32

tie, Dustin Daggett, Portland, MI, 32

Also receiving multiple votes: Sean Becker, Mitch Brown, Matt Covington, Greg Decaires, Jack Dover, Stewart Friesen, Brad Furr, Wayne Johnson, Carson Macedo, Anthony Nicholson, Kevin Nouse, Justin Sanders, J.R. Stewart, Shane Stewart, Channin Tankersley, Morgan Turpen.