NHRA Pro Stock is one of those classes where not much happens…until it does. In this case the guy the stuff was happening to was pro stock racer Allen Johnson and the devilish aerodynamics of the car are the things that got to him as his machine was roaring to the top end of the track.
You’ll see the car start to wander left to right on the big end and then all of a sudden the air gets hold of it and things go from bad to insanely worse as the car goes into a series of rolls we’re not sure we have anything to compare to. The fact that Johnson got out of this car and was awake is a miracle. Snap rolls like the ones you see here can really do a number on a person, especially with the g-forces associated with neck and brain injuries. Allen Johnson got out of this one about as lucky as anyone we can remember and it is proof that the safety gear (which has advanced by leaps and bounds since then) was designed and implemented properly to protect his life.
With very little downforce to work with, pro stock cars really get unhappy fast. Drivers are much more apt to kick the clutch pedal in these days than they were back in this era because it really was about this time where the bodies started to be so aerodynamic (when the car was traveling straight ahead) that they’d get ugly with just a couple of degrees of side movement.
Alan Johnson retired from pro stock last year but he’s not done racing. In fact, he’ll be at Gainesville running a blown, hemi powered Challenger Drag Pak in the massive Factory Stock Showdown category. It’ll be great to see him back at the track and still flying the Mopar banner!