CHICO, CALIFORNIA (March 15, 2019) – When David Gravel and the JJR #41 team arrived at the fairgrounds track that is nestled in Chico, California, there were still campers who were residing there after the devastating wildfires that consumed Northern California in 2018. To help out, The World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series continued the California Fire Relief Tour to assist the thousands of Northern and Southern California residents still healing from last year’s devastating wildfires. It’s humbling so helping out by donating $1 for every ticket sold as well as $5 for every special relief shirt sold is just a gesture of gratitude to those impacted. Back in the pit area there were 39 teams ready to get to work on the high-banked, quarter mile Silver Dollar Speedway.
The field was split for time trial action with David Gravel and the J.R.C. Transportation/High Performance Lubricants #41 Maxim set to take the stage fourth in the second set. There was a distinct bump developing in turn two that when hit was getting the cars off balance and scrubbing speed. The Watertown, Connecticut native cinched his belts tight, flipped down the shield of his Simpson Race Products helmet and was ready to put his Kistler Racing Engines power to work. He turned in two good laps with each being relatively consistent, but the quicker of his laps came in at 11.768 seconds. When time trails concluded it was good enough for 10 quick overall in Flight B.
There would be four heats with the top five automatically transferring to the feature event. The track was tricky at both ends, but the track was racy and allowed for passing with multiple lanes. The key was you had to find out which of the lanes was quickest for your car and setup. David would start from the inside of row three in the fourth and final heat race aboard the Weikert’s Livestock/Kaiden Kares #41. These small ovals are unforgiving, so the goal is to run a mistake free race and hope those around you do the same. Front row starters Tim Kaeding and Shane Golobic brought the field to the green, with the Californian Kaeding showing the way. Gravel was trying to find speed on the bottom before moving to the top side. He was in a fierce three car battle for the final transfer position. Unfortunately, when the checkered waved he got shuffled back to sixth as Kaeding took the win over Brad Sweet, Golobic, Cory Eliason and Andy Forsberg.
Relegated to the Last Chance Showdown (LCS), the JJR team went to work to get their Maxim Racing entry ready for action. The final four positions in the feature event were up for grabs in this event. Kasey Kahne would start from the pole position with Willie Croft to his outside. Gravel would man the outside of row two that he shared with Jacob Allen. When the green flag waved it was Kahne to the lead as Gravel wheeled the Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT)/Dissolvalloy Downhole Revolution #41 into second. He was in hot pursuit and as the 12-laps wound down he was closing in. After a caution flag flew he seized his opportunity and chased down the leader to make the pass for the lead and he led the remaining distance to take the LCS victory.
With his Hoosier Racing Tires still cooling, the driver quickly debriefed with the team and they went to work to get the forty-one ready for the 35-lap Mini Gold Cup feature event. Gravel would start from the 21st starting position. After the World of Outlaws tradition four-wide salute to the fans it was time to put on a show for all of the fans in the stands and those watching on DirtVision. When the yellow lights were replaced with green ones Brad Sweet took the lead. David wasted very little time and got his elbows up maneuver the Waco Metal/Buckwalter Trucking, LLC #41 through a gaggle of high speed race cars as they were all competing for the same real estate on the track. He was making incremental progress as the high speed racing endured a series of yellow flags and one red for Sheldon Haudenschild who flipped wildly in turn one and fortunately was okay. Sweet led the first twenty laps but surrender the lead to hard-charging Carson Macedo. Gravel kept his Weld Racing wheels turning as he made his way all the way up to eleventh on laps 24 and 25 before fading a little late and finishing 16th. Carson Macedo would pick up his first win of the season over Sweet, Ian Madsen and Donny Schatz with Dominic Scelzi rounding out the top five. The team will now head to Stockton Dirt Track to compete on Saturday night. Come out to support the team and the series . . . you will not regret it!
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; Schoenfeld Headers; Shell Shock Paint; Simpson Race Products; T-FAB Custom Metal Fabrication; Vortex Racing Products; Weld Wheels; Wilwood Racing; Winters Performance Products; and, www.racediecast.com.
To stay connected with Jason Johnson Racing (JJR), go to www.jasonjohnsonracing.com
To learn more about David Gravel, and stay up to date with his success and journey, go to www.DavidGravel89.com