KNOXVILLE, IOWA (June 14, 2019) – There is just something that is always so exciting about venturing to the small rural town of Knoxville, Iowa during the summer months. The people are welcoming. The energy level is always high in this town with a population of just over 7,000 residents in Marion County when sprint cars and racers are in town. They love racing and friends, and soon to be friends, usually come together at Dingus Lounge on Lincoln Street to celebrate the day – any day. And . . . just across that same street that Dingus sits on is the Sprint Car Capital of the World – Knoxville Raceway. David Gravel and the JJR #41 team, along with the other World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series stars and the stout Knoxville regulars, were all in town for the two-day Brownells Big Guns Bash. There were 42 teams lined up and ready to go inside the pit area at the historic half mile speed plant covered in deep, dark black clay. It was race day at Knoxville Raceway!
With the field split into two qualifying groups, David would be 18th car out in Flight B aboard the Maxim Racing/All Pro Auto Reconditioning #41. Carson Macedo was the first car out in this group and sat atop the speed charts with a lap of 14.902 seconds when Gravel took to the track. When David rolled across the line to start the clock his Kistler Engines/Engler Machine & Tool/All Pro Aluminum Cylinder Heads power was humming and the talented driver from Connecticut was wheeling and dealing from his ButlerBuilt/Sharp Advantage custom fitted seat. The clock read 15.317 seconds after the first lap, but he was just getting started. He kept his momentum moving forward and hit his marks the second time around to improve his time to 15.099 seconds, which ended up good enough for third quick in Flight B and sixth overall. A good start to the night at the Sprint Car Capital of the World.
When the times matriculated into the heat race lineups, Gravel would start on the outside of the front row in the Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT)/Weikert’s Livestock #41 Maxim alongside polesitter Carson Macedo. The top two starters would be followed to the line by Brad Sweet, Lynton Jeffrey, Sheldon Haudenschild, Matt Juhl, Austin McCarl, Mark Dobmeier, Jamie Ball, Joe Simbro and Skylar Prochaska. The heat races were eight laps in distance with only the top five transferring to the feature, so it was go time at Knoxville. Macedo pedaled the Kyle Larson Racing (KLR) #2 into the top spot as Brad Sweet used the bottom of the track to power by Gravel into the runner-up spot. The determined driver of the J.R.C. Transportation/High Performance Lubricants #41 was not about to just give it away, so the two talented speed chauffeurs started a spirited battle for the position early on with Gravel turning underneath Sweet to regain the spot before Sweet seized it back for good. Macedo would lead the race wire-to-wire to take the win over Sweet, Gravel and Haudenschild with Jeffrey locking down the fifth and final qualifying spot.
Missing the DIRTVision Fast Pass Dash by one position in his heat race, Gravel and the JJR #41 crew went to work to prepare their car for the 25-lap feature event. The horn sounded and it was time to go racing on the first of two nights in the Brownells Big Guns Bash. Gravel would line up from the tenth position to start the feature in The Boyd Family/C&R Racing #41 Maxim. After the traditional four-wide salute to the fans concluded they realigned in the two-by-two starting order and were ready to get up to speed. Third starting Brian Brown powered into the lead around front row starters Daryn Pittman and Shane Stewart at the start of the race as David was mired in an intense battle for positions inside and outside of the top ten. The car was fast and the driver was focused. A few early cautions regrouped the field with Brown still leading the way up front. David continued to battle and get the most out of his Maxim Racing machine as the laps began to whittle down. Brown would lead the entire distance to take the win over Pittman, Stewart and Donny Schatz with Brad Sweet coming home fifth. The second five finishers were Carson Macedo, Logan Schuchart, and Kraig Kinser with Gravel bringing home the forty-one in ninth as Sheldon Haudenschild rounded out the top ten. A good and consistent night for the forty-one team.
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.