JACKSON, MINNESOTA (June 2, 2017) – It was night two of the 39th Annual AGCO Jackson Nationals and the pit area was once again filled with 100 sprint cars. There were 38 – 410s, 37 – 360s, and 25 – 305s ready to do battle on the fast and ferocious half-mile speedway at Jackson Motorplex. The drivers were all attempting to build on their night one point totals to improve their chances of locking into Saturday night’s big finale.
The World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series field was once again split into two flights for time trials. For the second consecutive night, Jason was the 20th driver scheduled to go out for his two qualifying laps, but this time he was the first car out in Flight B aboard the Country Custom Creations (CCC)/Schoenfeld Headers #41 Maxim based on the car count. When the 19 Flight A drivers were done with their qualifying efforts, Jason rolled onto the track and pounded the loud pedal. His Kistler Engine came to life as he flew under the green flag to start lap one. He was fast and building speed as he darted down the back straightaway and into turn three. The stopwatch triggered when he crossed the start/finish line for lap one and it read 16.707 seconds. He stayed on the hammer and ran another consistent and quick second lap that came in at 16.737 seconds. The only driver faster than the Ragin’ Cajun in Flight B was Brad Sweet, giving Jason the second quickest time of the night in his qualifying group.
After extensive track prep and the opening ceremonies were completed, the Louisiana-born speedster would be slated to start on the pole of the fourth heat race with Danny Lasoski to his right. Paige Polyak and night one winner, Ian Madsen, were in row two with Sheldon Haudenschild and Paul McMahan in row three. When the initial green flag waved, it was quickly replaced by the yellow as McMahan slowed on the speedway. After heading to the work area, he rejoined the field and the green flag was waving again. This time Jason again drove the Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT)/ISC Racers Tape forty-one into the top spot and he was setting a torrid pace around the lightning fast oval. Lasoski was giving chase as Haudenschild and Madsen were battling for the show position. Johnson would lead wire-to-wire to take the heat race win crossing the line ahead of Lasoski, Haudenschild, and Ian Madsen with Tim Kaeding rounding out the top five transfer positions.
Making his way into the Craftsman Club Dash, Jason was sitting fourth in the pre-Dash inversion starting order. When a zero-inversion pill was pulled, the Cajun Sensation would start on the outside of row two beside Kerry Madsen and behind the front row of Joey Saldana and Brad Sweet. In row three was Kraig Kinser and Donny Schatz followed by Jason Sides and Danny Lasoski in row four. When the race got started it was Sweet out front with Jason holding onto his starting position. Sweet would slow and on the restart Madsen would drive into the lead as Jason maneuvered by Saldana to gain the runner-up spot on the track. Madsen would go on to take the Dash win ahead of Jason as Saldana, Schatz, Lasoski, Kinser, Sides and Sweet completed the finishing order.
The JJR Marshall Racing #41 team and driver worked hard up to this point of the night and were eager to make the most of their front row starting spot in the 25-lap feature event on the second night of the 39th Annual AGCO Jackson Nationals. Philip and the boys gave Jason a really fast race car all night and they delivered the results in qualifying to earn the clean air starting spot on the front row of the feature event. Kerry Madsen would sit on the pole as the field realigned in the two-by-two starting format. When the green flag waved, Kerry would jump into the lead but an early red flag for brother Ian Madsen who flipped stopped the action. When the high-speed racing resumed, Madsen would again retake the point position ahead of Jason aboard the Fischer Body Shop/FK Shocks #41. Madsen was working the fast, high line of the track as Jason was right there on the low side trying to make the pass. Five laps in he was right there and tried a slide job for lead in turn two , but unfortunately spun relegating him to the back of the pack for the restart. He did not fret and got his Hoosier Racing Tires rolling again when the racing resumed as he jumped on the hammer more determined than ever. He raced hard and used the speed the crew gave him to navigate through the field position-by position. When Kerry Madsen took the win over Kraig Kinser, Brad Sweet, Donny Schatz and Jason Sides, Jason clawed his way all the way back to earn a solid tenth-place finish. After the race he the driver of the forty-one commented, “The JJR Marshall Racing boys gave me a fast Maxim race car tonight.” He continued, “I made a costly mistake going for the lead too early, but salvaged a top ten.”
Disappointed, but not deterred, Jason and the JJR Marshall Racing team will regroup and be back at it on Saturday night looking to earn their way into the 24-car field for the finale of the 39th Annual AGCO Jackson Nationals.