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Bob Johnson lands first feature win after nine years in the driver’s seat
By Leigh Ann Rutledge
May 15 was a special day for Bob Johnson.
Johnson, of Harlem Springs, won the Mini Truck Class feature race at Midvale Speedway. His first feature win in a lengthy racing career.
He began racing in the street stock class in 1994 and ran until 2002 with his dad, Bob; uncle, Butch; and cousin, Rusty.
“We liked it. We never won a feature, we were never the fastest car,” he said. “We won a couple heat races and pursuits.”
Johnson took a break from racing because of life, kids and family. He always wanted to get back into racing but the opportunity wasn’t there. Prior to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, he located a truck which would allow him to return to the race track.
The truck had been raced and wrecked, so he needed to get it running again. With help from his cousin, Eddie McLean, and his sons, Connor and Brady McLean, and a lot of work, the truck was readied for the track.
He was only able to race four or five times in 2020 due to purchasing the truck after the season started and COVID restrictions.
He is sponsored by Benchmark Construction, Mark and Ken Nice and Deluxe Body.
“If it wasn’t for the McLeans and all their help, it wouldn’t have made it on the track,” Johnson stated. “Eddie and Connor were working on my truck before the feature the night I won.”
He won the feature race driving the #99 S-10, which has a black nose and is painted red, gray and white. The race was scheduled to run May 8, but racing was canceled due to weather conditions.
Number 99 is special to Johnson because it was the number his dad raced under.
Johnson would recommend anyone who is considering getting into racing to join the mini truck class. The trucks are more economical. He noted he has a competitive truck for less than a vehicle for the compact class.
“Trucks are extremely fun to drive compared to when I raced before,” said.
Along with Johnson returning to the track, the third generation of the Johnson family will hit the track in the near future.
Johnson and wife, Kirsten’s son, Storm, 15, has been turning practice laps on Friday nights. He has a Chevy Cavalier he will run in the Trophy Stock class.
Bobby does the mechanical work on the vehicles and Storm is getting interested in that area also.
Johnson recently found an old black and white photo of his dad when he won at Midvale, holding the flag and trophy, that hung in the living room by the steps when he was growing up.
“A feature win was always something I wanted,” Johnson explained. “It was emotional. I was thinking back to all those years we raced and thinking of Dad.”
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