CONCORD, NORTH CAROLINA (October 28, 2016) – At the end of each year, the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series wraps up their grueling coast-to-coast schedule at The Dirt Track at Charlotte in the Bad Boy Buggies World Finals. A great facility. A great crowd. And, great racing to top it all off. The pits are always jammed packed with race cars – sprint cars, late models and DIRT modifieds – and every one of the teams are there for one thing . . . the winner’s trophy and share of the purse for capturing the victory in this prestigious race.
There were 49 formidable sprint cars registered for the race and each of them completed two sets qualifying through time trials on Thursday night. One set was for Friday night’s show, while the other set was for Saturday night’s show. Jason went out 33rd overall, eighth in Group B, aboard the Priority Aviation Services, LLC/Valvoline #41 for his Friday night qualifying effort and turned in two really good laps. The first one was 13.070 seconds, but he picked up the pace the second time around and completed the circuit in an impressive 12.856 seconds. The second of two laps was third quick overall in Group B and set him up on the front row for the heat race.
Starting from the pole in his heat race, with Danny Lasoski to his outside, the Ragin’ Cajun used his Kistler Engines power to drive into the lead as he drove under the waving green flag. The top line was the quick lane and he leaned his Hoosier Racing Tire right up against the building cushion as he darted around The Dirt Track at Charlotte. He was moving in fast forward as crew chief Philip Dietz and the JJR crew had this race car bad fast. Jason would drive his way to the heat race victory after eight high speed laps taking the win over Lasoski, Sammy Swindell and Dave Blaney with Trey Starks rounding out the top five. He earned his way into the Dash event.
For the 6-lap Dash, a zero was drawn for the inversion, which meant the racers who made it into each Dash started heads up based on their time trial qualifying times at the start. The finish of the two Dash races set the inside and outside row of the feature starting order. Jason rolled out in the second Dash event in the Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT)/Dissolvalloy Downhole Revolution Maxim and lined up in his third starting spot. When the green flag waved Dale Blaney darted into the lead with Chad Kemenah and Jason giving chase. Jason moved around Kemenah into the runner-up position and was closing ground on Blaney when the checkered flag flew. Jason crossed the stripe in second. Kemenah came home third with Brian Brown, Joey Saldana and Danny Lasoski rounding out the field.
The Ragin’ Cajun earned the right to start from the outside of row two in the 30-lap feature. He shared his row with Greg Hodnett in the Heffner #27. When the front row of Brad Sweet and Dale Blaney split for the four-wide salute in front of the huge crowd that packed the grandstands, Johnson and Hodnett pulled up to fill out the lead row in the honorable formation. The beautifully painted Fischer Body Shop/CCC #41 Maxim glistened as fireworks exploded high in the air as the field slowly paced around the track. It was time to go racing for the drivers that worked hard and earned their way into the feature. When the green lights illuminated around the track, Dale Blaney was the first driver to seize the lead. These guys, all 25 of them, were scooting around this manicured oval. Jason was bad fast and was wheeling and dealing with Brad Sweet for the runner-up spot. These two professionals were putting on quite an incredible show at speed. If you weren’t on the edge of your seat, most likely you were sleeping because these guys were putting on a show worth twice the admission price. Jason took over the second spot as he was working the high line in three and four and diving down into turn one and drifting up to the wall on exit coming off turn two. The line was working and the gap was shrinking between Jason and Blaney with each passing lap. Jason caught him and finally worked his way under Blaney turning the car down coming off turn four. But Blaney was racing with a vengeance and stole the lead right back. The determined Cajun chauffeur wasn’t giving up, he never does, and finally took control of the lead position on lap 24 was set sail as he was cruising in clean air in the Priority Aviation Services, LLC/Waco Metal entry. The dust was flying and so was the forty-one. Wow! The white flag dropped indicating one-to-go with the Cajun Sensation leading Logan Schuchart by just over a quarter of a second. Jason would take the win over Schuchart as Donny Schatz rounded out the podium on night one of the Bad Boy Buggies World Finals at The Dirt Track at Charlotte.
The jubilant victor celebrated the win and was quick to thank his guys for giving him as fast race car. He highlighted, “I’ll tell you what, all of these Priority Aviation/Mesilla Valley Transportation guys have been doing a hell of a job all year long.” He continued, “To cap it off at the end of the year with a victory in front of this great crowd, you just couldn’t say any more about the facility. This is such an awesome event and to win is just an honor.” The owner and driver concluded by explaining, “We are a privateer team and we are definitely financially driven, so it is an honor to pull off another victory.” With his son Jaxx holding the checkered flag proudly holding up one finger to signify his Dad’s finishing position, camera bulbs were flashing capturing the smiles of the happy JJR #41 team on this great night celebrating the win.
An awesome run, and win, for the forty-one team!