WILMOT, WISCONSIN (July 13, 2019) – As track officials were turning the lights off at Hartford Speedway after David Gravel took the checkers on Friday night, the JJR #41 team headed out for their trek around the bottom of Lake Michigan and through Chicago en route to the Kenosha County Fairgrounds, home to the 1/3-mile, semi-banked Wilmot Raceway, for the Badger 40 on Saturday night. There were 23 teams parked in the pit area awaiting the driver’s meeting to kick off the night of racing. One of those was the Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT) #41.
Before the racing activities began, David took the time to meet with the fans and sign some autographs in the pit area as the grandstands started to fill in. By the time they started time trials, every seat in the house appeared to be filled to see David Gravel and all of the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series stars race in the state that is so famous for their cheese, Miller Beer (and Leinenkugel’s too!) and the Green Bay Packers. The Connecticut-born speedster would be the twelfth car out on the track aboard the Greber Racing Components/Chalk Stix Torsion Bars #41 Maxim. Donny Schatz, who was the second car out to take his two laps of qualifying, set the bar high with a lap of 12.567 seconds and Ian Madsen was close behind with a lap of 12.602 seconds when Gravel took to the track. He stomped on the accelerator coming out of the pits and took the green. His Kistler Engines power was humming and when he stopped the clock after his first lap it read 12.924 seconds. He stayed on the gas and hit each of his marks and turned a quicker lap the second time around at 12.295 seconds. He was the second fastest on the board until late in qualifying when Brad Sweet bumped both Schatz and Gravel down one spot with the quickest time of the night at 12.563 seconds. Gravel was third quick overall in time trials.
With time trials completed, World of Outlaws officials put together the heat race lineups based on the quickest lap for each of the drivers. David Gravel would be on the pole in the third heat race with Daryn Pittman to his outside. The remainder of the field had some strong drivers like Bill Balog, Carson Macedo and Russell Borland who would be poised to give chase. When the green flag waved, Gravel drove into the lead and dove low entering turn one with Pittman to his outside. The groove was still relatively narrow at this point of the night, but the racing was fast and action packed. With each passing lap, Gravel would extend his lead and put some distance between himself and Pittman. He took the checkered flag and the win by 1.926 seconds over Pittman with Macedo driving up to third followed by Balog with Borland rounding out the top five.
There were six cars locked into the DIRTVision Fast Pass Dash with one of them being the Durst, Inc./Team Jack Foundation JJR #41 entry of David Gravel. When the drivers pulled all of the pills, Donny Schatz would be on the pole with Brad Sweet to his outside with as Gravel and Pittman would make up row two and Tim Kaeding and Ian Madsen in row three. Schatz wasted little time driving into clean air at the front of the field as Sweet, Pittman and Gravel all were fighting for that second spot. Pittman got by Sweet to own it, but the three continued to put on an excellent show for the fans as they were racing relentlessly and clean. Schatz ran away and took the win over Pittman, Sweet and Gravel as Kaeding and Madsen rounded out the finishing order in the dash.
After the other classes completed their features, the only thing remaining was the pinnacle event of the night – the Badger 40. David would be starting from the outside of row two in the High Performance Lubricants/J.R.C. Transportation #41 Maxim beside Brad Sweet to kick off the racing. The track had widened out by this point of the night, so the fans were in for a treat. A focused Donny Schatz drove into the lead from the start with some exciting positional racing behind him. Over the course of the first 16 laps, David was running in the fourth position but make no mistake about it he was putting on an exciting show racing for position with second place running Pittman and third place running Sweet. The three talented drivers were again battling it out, kind of like badgers do in the wild, this time at Wilmot Raceway and the fans were the benefactors. Sweet would get by Pittman for the runner-up spot as Schatz was checking out a bit. David then would get by Pittman and moved the forty-one into third on lap 17. With 30 laps in the books it was Schatz, Sweet, Gravel, Pittman and Kaeding holding down the top five positions. The next lap around though Gravel made his move and got by Sweet to move into second place. At that point of the race, Schatz had a few lapped cars in between himself and now second place running Gravel. Gravel kept digging and was closing the gap slightly on the leader with each completed lap . . . a tenth of a second here then three tenths of a second there. Schatz was navigating his way through slower cars and Gravel was taking advantage of it as he continued to close. Unfortunately, he ran out of laps as Schatz dominated and took the win with David coming home with a second place finish. Sweet finished third as Pittman and Kaeding rounded out the top five. Another great run for the forty-one at Wilmot Raceway in the Badger 40!
We are proud to represent all of our dedicated and loyal supporters:
Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT); Saich Family; Jonestown KOA; Dissolvalloy Downhole Revolution; Weikert’s Livestock; J.R.C. Transportation, Inc.; Durst Inc.; Maxim Racing; The Boyd Family; Pro Powder Coating (PPC); Waco Metal; High Performance Lubricants, LLC; Team Jack Foundation; Mark Burch Motorsports; Tiger Towing; All Pro Aluminum Cylinder Heads, Inc.; All Pro Auto Reconditioning; AutoMeter; Bell Racing USA; Blackbeard; Brown & Miller Racing Solutions (BMRS); Buckwalter Trucking, LLC; C&R Racing; Chalk Stix Torsion Bars; Cody Monoco Racing; Crow Enterprizes, Engler Machine & Tool, Inc.; Factory Kahne FK Shocks; Fibreworks Composites; FK Rod Ends; Fuel Safe Racing Cells; Greber Racing Components; Hoosier Racing Tire; ISC Racers Tape; Jansen Transportation; K&N Filters; Kaiden Kares; Kistler Racing Engines; KSE Racing Products; LogoDaddy Graphics; Max Papis Innovations (MPI); MSD Performance; RaceDiecast.com; Schoenfeld Headers; Shell Shock Paint; Simpson Race Products; T-FAB Custom Metal Fabrication; Vortex Racing Products; Weld Wheels; Wilwood Racing; and Winters Performance Products.
To stay connected with Jason Johnson Racing (JJR), go to www.jasonjohnsonracing.com.
To stay up-to-date with David Gravel and his success and journey on and off the track, as well as to purchase his gear and merchandise, go to www.DavidGravel89.com.