SPENCER, IOWA (September 16, 2016) – Leaving their victory on Wednesday night in Colorado in their rearview mirror, the team headed East for some more high speed racing action on Friday night at the Clay County Fairgrounds for the Arnold Motor Supply Shootout. Jason and the JJR #41 team, along with 35 other 410 sprint car teams, lined the pit area awaiting the drivers meeting. The Priority Aviation Services, LLC/Waco Metal #41 Maxim driver and team were poised for action at the 3/8-mile oval.
The Eunice, Louisiana born wheelman would have to be patient as time trials kicked off. A high pill drawn for the forty-one team meant the Cajun Sensation would be the 34th driver to go out on the track, out of the 36 drivers that would climb into the cockpit of one of these powerful beasts. He waited. And waited. And, well, waited some more. There were some timing and scoring issues for the officials, but make no mistake about it when Jason rolled out onto the surface in the Fischer Body Shop/Custom Country Creations (CCC) #41 and fed his Kistler Engines power plant some fuel he was off and at speed. He was fast. Crazy fast. The quicker of his two laps came in at 15.274 seconds, which catapulted him to the top of the speed charts as he was the quick timer of the night.
Earning the pole position in the first of four heat races, he paced the field with Danny Lasoski to his outside. Terry McCarl and Jacob Allen were in row two and were ready to pounce. The green flag flew over the field as the black, orange and yellow Maxim Racing #41 machine Jason was chauffeuring shot out into the lead with Lasoski was close behind. This forty-one was fast. Jason bolted around the Clay County Fairground’s racing surface and when the checkered flag flew after eight laps he took the heat race victory ahead of Lasoski, Joey Saldana, and McCarl with Craig Dollansky locking down the fifth and final transfer positions.
For the second straight night Jason and the JJR crew had their entry in the Craftsman Club Dash, their 26th of the year – a 32.91% success rate. But unlike the previous night, the inversion draw was not as friendly to the forty-one team as an inversion pill of eight was pulled putting Jason back in the last starting spot for the six lap Dash event. David Gravel had his CJB #5 on the pole with Daryn Pittman to his outside in his Kasey Kahne Racing (KKR)/Great Clips #9. When they got up to speed it was a dog fight at the front of the pack. The Ragin’ Cajun must not have been content with everything as he was pounding the loud pedal and truckin’ around this track in his Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT)/FK Rod Ends #41 trying to earn a higher starting position for the feature. Gravel spun in turn four bringing out the caution flag and re-grouping the field. Jason’s march forward was not over at this point as he was a man on a mission and soon he was knocking on the door for the lead. He would get by Pittman to take the point position, but Pittman would carry his speed and beat the Cajun’ wheelman by inches at the finish line. A dominant run by Jason that caught the attention of the fans and the announcers as Johnny Gibson tweeted, “BEST Craftsman Club Dash of the year!!! @jasonjohnsonrac goes last to first, only to have @DarynPittman steal the win by inches.”
With his runner-up finish in the Craftsman Club Dash, Jason would start on the outside of the front row for the Arnold Motor Supply Shootout 30-lap feature in the ISC Racers Tape/FK Shocks Maxim. He had two new Hoosier Racing Tires mounted and was ready to roll. Pittman would jump out into the early lead as the remainder of the field followed. Jason was holding his own in the top five during the first half of the race, but was struggling with balance. He still had speed, and a lot of it, but in the latter stages of the race he fell just outside the top five. Pittman, who led the first 28 laps, would surrender the lead to a hard charging Donny Schatz on a green-white-checkered restart who went on to collect the win ahead of Pittman, Brad Sweet and Logan Schuchart with Shane Stewart rounding out the top five. Jason motored home with an eighth place finish, the JJR team and driver’s 44th top ten finish of the 2016 season – a 55.70% success rate, at the Clay County Fairground. Jason tweeted, “Had another awesome night going. Threw 2 new tires on for A feature, lost balance of car . . . Grrrrrrrr . . . Try again tomorrow!”