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Johnson shines in Cocopah Cup opener

Bryan Hulbert – SOMERTON, Ariz. (March 1, 2013) After a lackluster start to his 2013 season, Jason Johnson rebounded by capturing the opening night checkers of the Cocopah Cup Challenge presented by the Cocopah Casino at the Cocopah Speedway with the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by MAVTV American Real.

Drawing the pole in the night’s feature event, Johnson led the distance in the night’s 25 lap affair. Asked about the week off an whether or not any changes were made following engine problems in Tucson, Johnson replied, “First and foremost on these engine problems we had last week, we gave these Roush/Yates engines a wrong rapport. We filled up the nozzles with trash, and was just an unfortunate situation ‘cause there was defiantly nothing wrong with our Roush/Yates Ford.”

“I could run anywhere on the race track and I had a good car. That’s what happens when you drive good equipment” commented Johnson on his performance. “I felt like at the end of the race that it just started getting a little too far around to top in turns one and two and started running the bottom and gauging myself off the lapped cars. Three and four, I ran anywhere I had to in order to pass these guys.”

Pacing to the green alongside Jeff Swindell, Johnson grabbed the advantage into the first turns with Mitch Olson taking the field three wide to move from fourth to second. Challenging low for the lead, Olson would fall in line with the Chevy Performance No. 14 of Tony Stewart in tow.

Slowing on lap three for the stopped No. 94 of Jeff Swindell, the Hedman Husler Hedders entry retired for the evening after the pinch bolt in the left rear torsion arm snapped.

Resuming with the single file restart, the race for the runner up spot came into focus as Stewart worked around the Pettit Oil Company No. 27. Swapping the top line for the inside line, the Bass Pro Shops No. 14 worked off turn four on Lap 4 to find Olson between he and the wall, making slight contact before the pair raced into turns one and two with Mitch Olson taking back the runner up spot.

Pacing into slower traffic by lap ten, Johnson would maintain a comfortable advantage as Olson and Stewart paced the remainder of the podium with Lucas Wolfe and Roger Crockett making up the top five.

Slowing for a caution caused by debris with three laps to complete, Johnson restarted with a trio of slower cars between himself and Olson, giving the MVT No. 41 a comfortable 3.644 second advantage at the checkered flag. Mitch Olson held on for the runner up spot with Tony Stewart completing the podium. Lucas Wolfe crossed the line fourth with Brian Brown completing the top five after accidental contact between the No. 21 and the No. 11 of Roger Crockett send the SKS Racing entry flipping coming to the checkered flag.

Henry VanDam settled for sixth with Logan Forler earning the Hard Charger of the race coming from twenty-first to seventh followed by Wayne Johnson from nineteenth. Michigan native Dain Naida finished ninth in the Oshweken Speedway No. 0 with Oklahoma’s Dustin Morgan making up the top ten.

Heat Race victories belonged to Mitch Olson in the Ti22 Heat one followed by Henry VanDam in BMRS Heat two. Heat three powered by Wesmar saw Dustin Morgan pace the field with Tony Stewart grabbing the Saldana Racing Products Heat four victory. The Joie of Seating “B” Feature was captured by Brady Bacon.

The Hawk Performance Products Fastest Lap of the Feature went to Jason Johnson.

The Cocopah Cup Challenge continues Saturday, March 2 at the Cocopah Speedway with gates opening at 5pm and racing beginning at 7pm.

Lucas Oil ASCS presented by MAVTV American Real
Cocopah Speedway – Somerton, Ariz.
Cocopah Cup Challenge
Friday, March 1, 2013

Car Count: 31

Ti22 Heat 1 (8 Laps): 1. 27-Mitch Olson[4]; 2. 11-Roger Crockett[5]; 3. 41W-Joshua Williams[3]; 4. 94-Jeff Swindell[8]; 5. 33-Danny Lasoski[7]; 6. 23N-Brock Lemley[6]; 7. 99-Shawn Petersen[1]; DNF 45X-Johnny Herrera[2]

BMRS Heat 2 (8 Laps): 1. 33V-Henry VanDam[2]; 2. 41-Jason Johnson[7]; 3. 82-Lucas Wolfe[6]; 4. 17W-Cole Wood[3]; 5. 23-Seth Bergman[8]; 6. 01-Kaylene Verville[1]; 7. 41C-Billy Chester III[5]; 8. 8AZ-Jordan Stetson[4]

Wesmar Heat 3 (8 Laps): 1. 93-Dustin Morgan[1]; 2. 29-Brandon Hahn[2]; 3. 0-Dain Naida[4]; 4. 4X-Brady Bacon[3]; 5. 57X-Dalten Gabbard[6]; 6. 20Z-Rick Ziehl[5]; 7. 05-Brad Loyet[7]; 8. 81-Danny Wood[8]

Saldana Heat 4 (8 Laps): 1. 14-Tony Stewart[4]; 2. 21-Brian Brown[1]; 3. 5H-Justyn Cox[2]; 4. 18-Tony Bruce Jr[3]; 5. 77X-Wayne Johnson[5]; 6. 2L-Logan Forler[7]; 7. 90-Lance Norick[6]

The Joie of Seating B Feature (12 Laps): 1. 4X-Brady Bacon[1]; 2. 18-Tony Bruce Jr[2]; 3. 77X-Wayne Johnson[4]; 4. 20Z-Rick Ziehl[6]; 5. 2L-Logan Forler[5]; 6. 57X-Dalten Gabbard[3]; 7. 05-Brad Loyet[8]; 8. 45X-Johnny Herrera[15]; 9. 81-Danny Wood[12]; 10. 90-Lance Norick[10]; 11. 41C-Billy Chester III[11]; 12. 99-Shawn Petersen[13]; 13. 01-Kaylene Verville[9]; 14. 23N-Brock Lemley[7]; 15. 8AZ-Jordan Stetson[14]

Protect the Harvest A Feature (25 Laps): 1. 41-Jason Johnson[1]; 2. 27-Mitch Olson[4]; 3. 14-Tony Stewart[5]; 4. 82-Lucas Wolfe[6]; 5. 21-Brian Brown[10]; 6. 33V-Henry VanDam[8]; 7. 2L-Logan Forler[21]; 8. 77X-Wayne Johnson[19]; 9. 0-Dain Naida[11]; 10. 93-Dustin Morgan[3]; 11. 33-Danny Lasoski[15]; 12. 45X-Johnny Herrera[24]; 13. 11-Roger Crockett[7]; 14. 23-Seth Bergman[12]; 15. 18-Tony Bruce Jr[18]; 16. 17W-Cole Wood[16]; 17. 5H-Justyn Cox[14]; 18. 05-Brad Loyet[23]; 19. 29-Brandon Hahn[9]; 20. 20Z-Rick Ziehl[20]; 21. 41W-Joshua Williams[13]; 22. 57X-Dalten Gabbard[22]; DNF 4X-Brady Bacon[17]; DNF 99-Shawn Petersen; DNF 94-Jeff Swindell[2]

Lap Leaders: Jason Johnson (1-25) Hard Charger: Logan Forler+14
FSR High Points of the Night: Jason Johnson
Provisionals: Brad Loyet (Full Point), Johnny Herrera (Full Point), Shawn Petersen (Promoter)

2013 “A” Feature Winners: Brian Brown-1, Roger Crockett-1, Jason Johnson-1

Lucas Oil ASCS Driver Points (Top 10): 1. Brian Brown 417; 2. Roger Crockett 389; 3. Jason Johnson 374; 4. Johnny Herrera 370; 5. Wayne Johnson 354; 6. Jeff Swindell 351; 7. Lucas Wolfe 350; 8. Tony Bruce, Jr. 347; 9. Seth Bergman 321; 10. Brad Loyet 313

The 2013 season marks the twenty-second year of sanctioning Sprint Car racing for the American Sprint Car Series, which brings the best of Sprint Car racing to dozens of different tracks throughout the nation and into Canada. Anchored by the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series, ASCS also consists of nine different Regions throughout the nation.

Lucas Oil Products is the title sponsor of the American Sprint Car Series. More information can be found on Lucas Oil Products at MAVTV is the presenting sponsor of the American Sprint Car Series. Log onto for information regarding availability and listings in your area.

Associate sponsors for the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by MAVTV include: Hoosier Racing Tire and Brodix

Team Lucas Sponsors for the American Sprint Car Series consist of Protect the Harvest, Geico, E3 Spark Plugs, and General Tire.

Product and Contingency Sponsorship provided by: K&N Filters,, Engler Machine and Tool, Roush Yates Racing Engines, FSR Radiator and Racing Products, Schoenfeld Headers,, Weld Wheels, Fuel Safe, Saldana Racing Products, SBI Fuel Bladders, Maxwell Industries, Print Place, Xtreme Accu-Tach, Simpson, LeJoie Seating, Ti 22 Performance, Wesmar Racing Engines, Hinchman Indy Racewear, Brown and Miller Racing Solutions, DMI Rear Ends, Rod End Supply, Smiley’s Racing Products, Speedway Motors, and Hilborn Injection Systems.

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Photo Credit: Hulbert Photo