ROSSBURG, OHIO (September 22, 2017) – From the West Coast to the fast half mile oval that is carved into the cornfields of northeast Ohio – Eldora Speedway. Jason and the JJR Marshall Racing team had the Priority Aviation Services, LLC #41 Maxim in the pit area as 42 cars were signed in for the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series race as part of the Four Crown Nationals weekend.
The large field of competitors was split into two qualifying groups, with Jason slated to push off 16th in Flight A. His Kistler Engines power came to life and the Eunice, Louisiana native dropped his right foot to get all the parts moving under the hood. His Hoosier Racing Tires dug in and he took the green flag to start his two laps around the fast Eldora Speedway. When he crossed the timing stripe the first time the clock read 13.176 seconds. He stayed on the gas and ran a quicker lap the second time around, this time improving his time to 13.001 seconds, which ended up being second quick in Flight A and overall.
Earning the pole position in the second heat race, with the top two finishers locking in to the Craftsman Club Dash, there was no time to lollygag as hot shoes like Saldana, Sweet, Pittman, Kemenah and Marks wanted to have a say into who earned those positions. The Ragin’ Cajun flexed his muscles at the start and drove the Fisher Body Shop/CCC #41 into the top spot with Saldana giving chase. These daredevils fly around Eldora and this night was no exception as everyone was chasing the yellow #41 painted on the tail tank throughout the heat race. No one would catch him as Jason and Joey Saldana secured the transfer positions into the Dash as Brad Sweet, Daryn Pittman and Chad Kemenah rounded out the top five to move onto the A-Main.
For the 45th time in World of Outlaws competition this season, Jason and the JJR Marshall Racing team’s hard work and preparation landed them a spot in the Craftsman Club Dash. The forty-one was sitting in the third starting spot in the pre-Dash inversion and when the ‘4’ pill was pulled it put the Waco Metal/Valvoline Maxim on the outside of row one beside Tim Shaffer with Donny Schatz and Shane Stewart right behind in row two. If that wasn’t enough talent the remainder of the lineup was made up by David Gravel, Rico Abreu, Joey Saldana and Kraig Kinser. If that alone doesn’t impress you they would tray their best in the 6-lap Craftsman Club Dash. When the green flag waved, Shaffer drove into the lead as Stewart drove into the runner-up position with Johnson and Schatz right behind. The ran six laps in the blink of an eye with Shaffer taking the win over Stewart as the Ragin’ Cajun came home third with Schatz, Abreu, Saldana, Gravel and Kinser completing the finishing order.
The starting lineup was now set for the 30-lap #BEFOUTTHECROWNS World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series showdown at ‘The House that Earl (Baltes) Built’ and now owned and operated by Tony Stewart and Roger Slack. Jason would get started from the inside of row two and after the traditional four-wide salute to the fans it was time to go racing at Eldora Speedway. Tim Shaffer would shoot out into the lead at the start of the race as Stewart, Jason and Schatz were giving chase. They were flying through the clean air as it flowed over top of Jason’s Vortex wing. Jason was trucking in the Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT)/Pro Powder Coating (PPC) #41 Maxim from the show position. With 13 laps in the books, Shane Stewart slowed as he cut a tire. Shaffer would lead Schatz and Johnson back to the green as the field got back up to speed. Stewart rejoined the field and was wheeling his Larson Marks #2 back through the field as the front three were setting the pace a little further forward. Shaffer would go onto conquer the half mile to get the win over Schatz and Saldana with Jason bringing his entry home with his second fourth-place finish in a row as David Gravel completed the top five.
A great run for the forty-one as they continue to head east for Saturday night’s Commonwealth Clash at Lernerville Speedway.