GRAND FORKS, NORTH DAKOTA (June 3, 2022) – After a character building Memorial Day weekend of action for Carson and the JJR #41 team, they regrouped throughout the week back in Missouri and were excited to get back on the track Friday night as they traveled to River Cities Speedway’s racy quarter mile speed plant. The track is located in Grand Forks, North Dakota, which by the way is the home to the world’s largest French Fry Feed annually as part of the Potato Bowl USA event in the fall of each year that started 56 years ago. This exciting bullring always seems to produce some incredible racing action for the drivers, teams, and the fans in the stands. After safely trucking roughly 850 miles, Philip Dietz and the team unloaded in the pit area on an almost perfect day with the sun shining and the temperatures in the low 70s. They were ready to go racing along with a total of 29 competitive teams that were locked and loaded for action at River Cities Speedway.
Bell Racing athlete, Carson Macedo, would be the 25th driver to hit the track in the Tarlton and Son/Durst Inc./Sam I Am #41 in My Place Hotels Qualifying. With each driver’s performance measured on the clock in thousandths of a second, these professionals have no room for error. When it was his turn to show his speed and talented, Carson gripped the steering wheel with his black K1 Race Gear gloves and dropped his right foot on the accelerator. His Kistler Engines power responded and was ready to take his on a high speed adventure around River Cities Speedway. He raced under the green flag and was looking to beat the second hand of the clock. Following the completion of his first lap the clock read 9.820 seconds. He stayed focused and on the hammer the next time around turning his final circuit with an even faster lap at 9.795 seconds. The better of Carson’s two laps was fourth quick overall when time trials concluded. There was a total of 11 drivers who recorded sub-10 second laps in time trials with Sheldon Haudenschild setting the quickest time of the night at 9.685 seconds, which was quick but did not surpass the track record still held by Jason Meyers, now the owner and leader at Meyers Constructors, of 9.269 seconds that he set back on August 9, 2009.
Based on the size of the field there were three 8-lap heat races on tap for the evening of racing with the top six finishers transferring to the feature event. That positioned the Dissolvalloy/Factory Kahne/Indy Performance Composites (IPC) #41 Maxim on the outside of the front row beside red hot Sheldon Haudenschild in the first and fastest heat race. Current WoO point leader Brad Sweet was on the inside of row two with lightning quick Jacob Allen to his outside. A contingent of regulars at River Cities starting with Austin Pierce and followed by Mark Dobmeier, Wade Nygaard, Jack Croaker, Nick Ranten, and Travis Strandell tucked in behind the first two rows two-by-two. The initial start was short-lived as Nick Ranten spun to bring out the yellow. They would try again, but this time the yellow flew again because the field stacked up and were out of order before they took the green. The third time was a charm as Macedo drove the Albaugh #41 into the lead over Haudenschild and took command of the lead. He was up on the wheel as the track was very tacky and fast. He was out front in the clean air and putting some distance between himself and the Wooster, Ohio driver of the NOS Energy Drink #17. As the laps were winding down he was in a high speed groove. Coming to the checkered flag the yellow flag waved, this time for Austin Pierce who slowed, regrouping the field for a green-white-checkers dash to the finish. Macedo would not be denied as he raced to the victory over Haudenschild with Sweet, Allen, Dobmeier and Nygaard securing the remaining transfer positions.
Moving into the DIRTVision Fast Pass Dash, Carson headed to the frontstretch to pull his starting position for the 6-lap race to set the starting lineup for the first 3 rows of the feature. He dropped his hand into the oversized NOS Energy Drink can and pulled out the ‘1’ pill that put him on the pole to start the dash. His partner on the front row of the dash would be Kasey Kahne with row two being made up of Logan Schuchart and Kraig Kinser. Sheldon Haudenschild and local favorite Donny Schatz paced from row three. When the green flag waved it was Macedo driving the Complete Parts & Equipment Solutions/Team Jack Foundation/Smith Titanium #41 to the lead with Schuchart slipping by Kahne for the runner-up spot. Kraig Kinser bicycled the MVT #11k in the first set of turns but wrestled it down back on all four tires, but no before allowing the field to pass by. Meanwhile, Carson Macedo was locked down and trucking Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT) style at the front of the field. He led wire-to-wire as he raced under the waving checkered flag. Carson was followed across the finish line by Schuchart and Kahne with Schatz, Haudenschild and Kinser completing the finishing order.
Earning the pole position for the 35-lap NOS Energy Drink Gerdau First Leg of the Northern Tour feature, Carson waited patiently as Philip Dietz, Clyde Knipp, and Nate Repetz worked on his speed chariot preparing it for the feature. The horns sounded as the competitors climbed into their speed machines. Carson was secure in the cockpit with his red Crow Enterprizes safety belts. The field was set. The fans were brimming with excitement. It was now time to go racing World of Outlaw sprint car style! Second starting Logan Schuchart would use the outside lane to jump into the early lead over Carson Macedo’s Albaugh – Your Alternative/Bandy & Associates/Mr. Jim’s Racing #41. The surface at River Cities Speedway was still incredibly tacky and fast as the leaders were still turning sub-10 second laps. By lap 3, the leaders had already caught the back of the field and began navigating through lap traffic. Schuchart was doing a masterful job weaving through the traffic at speed. So was Macedo as he was closing in on the Shark Racing #1s. Schuchart led the first 10 laps, but Macedo had caught him and made his move entering turn three as he drove hard in on the bottom and stuck it through that set of turns. He exited turn four and drifted up in front of Schuchart to lead lap 11 and quickly disposed of two lap cars to put a little breathing room between himself and Schuchart. They were green flag racing until lap 22 when the yellow was displayed for a slowing Zack Omdahl. Carson had lap all the way up to tenth running Mark Dobmeier with 13 laps still to go in the race. It would be Macedo bringing Schuchart, Schatz, Sweet and Kahne back to the green when they resumed racing. Schuchart raced hard into turn one on the restart and flipped after bouncing and bicycling through the ruts in turn one. He headed to the work area and his crew did a fantastic job getting him back on the track where he would start at the tail of the lead lap cars, which put him in the 9th spot to restart. Macedo now had the advantage of using the single file restart, but Donny Schatz and Brad Sweet were right behind him and were about to surrender. The green flag waved and the Lemoore, California native hunkered down and maintained control of the top spot while Schatz and Sweet fiercely battled for second place on the track. The final yellow of the night flew with 4 laps to go when Jordan Graham slowed and could not make it into the infield. Carson settled in and focused on the goal – the checkered flag. He rode his powerful and reliable Kistler Engine the remainder of the way when they got back up to speed as he collected his fifth WoO victory of the 2022 season aboard the JJR #41 over Brad Sweet and Donny Schatz who rounded out the podium.
A smiling Carson Macedo climbed out of the cockpit and received congratulations from his crew of Clyde Knipp and Nate Repetz. Owner and Crew Chief Philip Dietz was all smiles too as he gave his driver a fist bump before sharing a moment to FaceTime co-owner Brooke Dietz and their newborn son Jace. With his (and the team’s) confidence wavering a bit he reflected on their performance over the past few weeks in May, Carson explained, “I think we’ve just had a bit of bad luck on top of being a little bit off lately.” With a positive mindset, he continued, “I’m just happy to put these guys back in victory lane and pick up everyone’s confidence. We can go to Huset’s with our heads held high and hopefully contend for another win. Philip, Clyde and Nate have been working so hard.” The winner of the race concluded, “The character in the track made it interesting tonight. It honestly felt like the more the race went on, the worse I got. My car just got heavier and tighter as the track was chunking out, and that was all while dealing with lap traffic. Luckily, I chose that right lane and snuck by Logan . . . that was a big move.” A great night and run for Macedo and the forty-one team!
Carson Macedo and the JJR #41 Team Collect their Fifth WoO Victory of the Season! Photo Credit: Trent Gower
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To stay connected with Jason Johnson Racing (JJR), go to www.jasonjohnsonracing.com.
To stay up-to-date with Carson Macedo and his success journey on and off the track, as well as to purchase his gear and merchandise directly, visit www.carsonmacedoracing.com.