MECHANICSBURG, PENNSYLVANIA (July 27, 2019) – The sun was shining and the thermometer was once again searching for 90, but that did not stop the drivers, teams and wonderful fans from coming out to Williams Grove Speedway for the final night of the Champion Racing Oil Summer Nationals. There were once again 32 cars registered to race in the $20,000-to-win event and the fans were lined up at the ticket windows purchasing their passes to see the best in the business put on a show at that track that has been building speed stars since 1939.
The JJR team hauler was pulled in towards the fourth turn end of the front pit area. They opened the trailer door and rolled out the Weikert’s Livestock/Pro Powder Coating (PPC) #41 Maxim as they readied for an evening of work. The Watertown, Connecticut native, who has been on a run here of late with nine straight top five finishes including two wins, would be the 13th car out of the track for time trial qualifying. Lance Dewease, the seventh car out, was sitting at the top of the board with a lap of 17.497 seconds. Gravel got rolling and took the green flag in front of the front straightaway grandstands. He was moving and grooving and shot to the top of the board with an impressive lap of 17.290 seconds. He stayed on the loud pedal the second time around, but was a little slower at 17.409 seconds. It was Gravel and the team’s 16th quick time of the year in their flight or overall if there was less than 38 cars.
There would be four heat races posted with Gravel and The Boyd Family/Jansen Transportation #41 Maxim Racing entry sitting on the pole position in the first and fastest heat race base on the driver’s quickest lap in time trials. David would share the front row with Tim Shaffer, Friday night’s winner, with Ian Madsen and Chad Trout in row two, Logan Schuchart and Cory Haas in row three, as Jason Sides and Nicole Bower rounded out the starting grid. They were side-by-side as they entered turn three and when the green lights illuminated it was Gravel using his Kistler Engines power to drive into the lead at the start over Tim Shaffer. David was one cool cat inside the cockpit as he was flying. He was building his lead with each completed laps, and when the checkered flag flew after 8 laps he took the win by a whopping 6.964 seconds over second place finisher Chad Trout after Tim Shaffer dropped out with engine issues with one lap to go. Ian Madsen, Cory Haas and Logan Schuchart locked into the final three transfer positions to the feature event from the first heat race.
Hoping for a good pill draw for starting position in the DIRTVision Fast Pass Dash, Gravel brought his buddy Jaxx Johnson to the frontstretch to pull the pill. Jaxx pulled his favorite number ‘5’, which put David on the inside of row three on a track surface that was becoming increasingly more challenging to make passes. No worries though as David lined up in his starting spot behind front row starters Brad Sweet and Sheldon Haudenschild and the second row of Donny Schatz and Daryn Pittman. He shared row three with Danny Dietrich as Lance Dewease and Chad Trout followed in row four. Sheldon Haudenschild powered off the top side and into the lead at the start over Sweet and Schatz. Dietrich scooted under Gravel for the fifth position and the high speed chase was on. Everyone was using the top lane to build and carry their speed around the famous half mile. Haudenschild would pick up the win over Sweet, Schatz, Pittman, Dietrich and Gravel in the Buckwalter Trucking, LLC/High Performance Lubricants #41 with Dewease coming home seventh and Trout eighth.
There would be five more laps in the finale of the Champion Racing Oil Summer Nationals and the field of 26 cars, including two drivers who elected to take a provisional, was set to go racing for the winner’s check and prizes. The fans in the stands were on their feet as the drivers went four wide across the half mile surface. It was time to go racing at Williams Grove Speedway! They took the green, but before a lap could be completed chaos erupted on the front straightway sending Shane Stewart flipping. Thankfully he was not injured and they towed the car back to the pit area where a beautiful thing happened that defines the character of those involved in sprint car racing – fellow competitors and team came and assisted Stewart and his CJB #5 team to change the front end, front wing and top wing so he could rejoin the field. That is why sprint car racing is, well, the best! When racing resumed, Brad Sweet drove into the lead over Schatz and Haudenschild as Gravel was wheeling and dealing aboard the J.R.C. Transportation/Waco Metal #41 Maxim in a fierce battle with Pittman for the fourth position. Gravel would secure over the first half of the race until Pittman wrestled it back on lap 16. On lap 10, Schatz made his way by Sweet for the top spot and was showing the way. He would lead the remainder of the race and take the win over Haudenschild by 1.484 seconds, Sweet and Pittman with Gravel coming home fifth. It was his tenth consecutive top five finish, and 27th top five of the 2019 season – a 58.7% top five success rate. Another great run for the forty-one!
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.