Michael Johnson: Spins, Punctures and a Top 10
 August 22, 2012| 
  • Team News

This past race event at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, was amazing; full of adventure at every corner. We had testing, practice, qualifying and three races in the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda. Over the four-day event it rained, I spun, had a puncture, had to start last in one of the races and had my best finish this season, 10th in the third race.

Road America is a four-mile track with mid and high speed corners and elevation changes. It's a fun track to race especially now that I am improving and carrying the speed through the corners better. I won here last year in the Skip Barber Series, but the car I'm racing in now is totally different so I'm happy with my results, knowing I will get better and better.

I qualified 15th for the first race and finished 12th. I feel I could have qualified better, but I couldn't get a clean lap. There was lots of traffic. I'm working on how to space my laps better so I can get a clean lap. In the race I did really well staying away from the big crashes that happened around me. That was a major accomplishment. I was quick and kept in mind that the grid for the second race was to be determined by laps times from this race, so I really had to put in a quick lap.

In the second race I started sixth, yeah! However, that didn't last long. On the first lap I spun in Turn 8 due to a puncture that I didn't know I had. I continued on only to lose it in Canada Corner and ended my race in the gravel trap. That meant I had to start the third race in last place.

Starting the third race in last, 29th, didn't phase me. I was looking forward to climbing up through the field. It gave me a chance to work on my passing, to be smooth and smart.

Catching the guys in the front is one thing, passing is another. EVERYONE was in front of me! I was able to work my way up the field and catch the mid-pack and pass up to tenth, where I finished the race. I was hoping to be able to catch the front pack, but would have needed a caution to be able to do that.

I'm happy with the different situations I was faced within the races; I was able to apply the logic of it all with my driving. Now I'm ready to move on to the street race in Baltimore in two weeks. Earlier in the season I really liked racing on the street course at St. Pete with the tight walls and close racing. Baltimore here I come!

Here's my upcoming Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda race schedule:

Baltimore - 1-2 September
Virginia International Raceway - 14-15 September

Please follow me on Facebook@michaeljohnsonracing, Twitter @racer54iscool, Instagram @johnsonracing54 and my website MichaelJohnsonRacing.com. Your support means a lot to me!

I'll report back again after Baltimore, until then, keep smiling and be happy!!

All the best,
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