Veteran Late Model racer Wesley Johnson is hoping to end an over two year winless streak in Sunday night’s inaugural race at Carteret County Speedway in Swansboro, North Carolina.
Johnson is a former multi-time race winner and champion at East Carolina Motor Speedway in Robersonville, North Carolina, but he hasn’t scored a win since June 1, 2013. While the 24-year-old hopes to end his winless drought, the flat Carteret County Speedway racetrack is a unique challenge for him.
“It’s definitely different from any other track I’ve raced on,” Johnson said about the track. “I love it. Great track.”
Like every driver that is set to ‘ride the wave’ into Carteret County, Johnson has an expectation of excellence.
“My expectations are to go there and try to get a top-three finish if not win it,” Johnson remarked. “I’m expecting a big crowd to show up.”
Many of the racers that are expected to race at Carteret come from all around the Coastal Carolina region and Johnson has raced against most of them. His performance against many of the drivers racing on Sunday gives him high hopes for Sunday. But he also knows many of the drivers have experience at flatter tracks, experience the former dirt racer lacks in asphalt racing.
“Just about everybody I’ve heard that’s going to be there, I’ve raced against either this year or in the past,” Johnson explained. “I feel comfortable with most of them. You’ve got some that can be a little hot headed but it’s all good. Some of them, I’ve out-performed this year, however, flat tracks never been where I’ve raced at all the time. Haley [Moody] has done great on flat tracks. Taylor Howard, Kenneth Mercer, there’s a whole lot of them used to flat tracks whereas I’m used to banked tracks.”
Another challenge for the drivers in the race could be getting accustomed to the American Racer tires. Late Model Stock Car drivers are used to Hoosier tires, but Carteret County Speedway will be the lone track racing on American Racer tires. There’s no pressure there for Johnson though. He likes the American Racer tires better than the Hoosier tires.
“Compared to the Hoosier tires, they’re 10 times better down there I feel. I started on a set of Hoosier scuff tires and didn’t like them as much as I liked the American Racer tires.”
Carteret County Speedway’s inaugural event will be held on Sunday night with the green flag set to fly at 7pm. Be sure to check out RACE22.com all weekend for coverage of the grand opening.