At this point, the racing season might be young, but Johanna Long has already been busy traveling and turning heads this season. So far, she has traveled to SpeedFest 2009 at Lanier National Speedway (GA) and The World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing at New Smyrna Speedway (FL). In both places, she’s taken down top-five finishes and impressed many observers who have caught their first chance to see the sixteen-year-old driver race.
This past weekend, Long went home to some more familiar racing grounds and wound up grabbing her first win of the season. On Friday night, Long returned to Five Flags Speedway in her hometown of Pensacola, Florida. The defending track Pro Late Model champion challenged for the win, but was forced to settle for second.
“I qualified second and started the race ninth,” said Long of her Five Flags race. “I made it through the field once, but got into an incident with another driver and had to go to the rear of the field again. By the end of the race, I got back up to second. It was a really fun race, and it was a good experience for me to pass cars like that.”
Saturday night she improved by one spot, as she was victorious in Pro Late Model competition at Mobile International Speedway (AL).
“Mobile is like a second home to me,” said Long. “It’s close to Pensacola, and I have raced a lot there. On Saturday, we had a really good car. It was our second time running that car, and we were shaking it down to get it ready for this weekend’s races. I had a really good race with Steven Davis at Mobile. He’s a good racer, and we had lots of fun. It was even more fun, because I ended up winning.”
Long’s good weekend sets the stage for her debut in the ASA RC Cola/Moon Pie Southeast Asphalt Tour this coming weekend. She’ll enter the tour’s Friday night race at Five Flags and then head to Mobile for their second race of the season on Saturday night. Since both races will take place on familiar ground, she knows that the debut could be a really successful one.
“We have high hopes for both races,” said Long. “We think that we’ll run well at both tracks, and we’re going to try and win one of the races this weekend.”
For more information on Johanna Long, please contact Matt Kentfield at (704) 788-2134, and be sure to stay tuned for her new website, coming soon.