As the racing season wound to an end here in the United States last year, Sprint Car driver, Jonathan Allard had no intentions of sitting idle throughout the off season. In fact, the driver embarked upon a long journey to New Zealand where his performances were impressive to say the least. Allard took six checkered flags and at the season’s end and won the Western Springs Speedway Track Championship.
Jonathan Allard recently finished second place in a World of Outlaws event at the Thunderbowl Speedway, in Tulare, California.
“Most of the tracks there (New Zealand) are old rugby stadiums,” he shared. “So we essentially race on tighter tracks that have stands all the way around them. Much smaller tracks than in the U.S., but a ton of fun to race.”
Jonathan Allard recently returned from New Zealand, where he raced sprint cars during the off season in the United States.
Recently returning to the states with confidence by his side, Allard was geared up and ready to roll. With intentions of continuing his successful run, he headed for the Thunderbowl Speedway, in Tulare, California eager to compete in the World of Outlaws event.
“Tulare is a demanding track,” he explained. “You have to be aggressive and willing to run all over the track. Typically, you are on the top of the track, right on the fence, and it can be intimidating to some people.”
“It was our first weekend back in the U.S., and we were having a good weekend. . . So we had pretty high confidence.”
Manning the Williams Motorsports car, the driver qualified as the 12th fastest car, earning a front row position in his heat. Taking the victory in his heat race, Allard took an eighth place finish in the dash. Faced with a rough track during the final race of the night, he would cross the finish line in 11th place.
On the final night, Allard qualified with the eighth fastest time, putting himself in great position for the upcoming event. Taking second place in his heat, the driver earned a pole position in the dash.
He had no intentions of experiencing nothing less than success and when the dash was deemed underway, immediately took an early lead. Managing to hold on to his position, the driver took the win.
“With the World of Outlaws, it is crucial to run first or second in your heat, so you have the opportunity to start in the top ten of the feature event, ” he ensured. “We won our heat and put ourselves in the dash, so we were pleased with that.”
Aware of the condition of the track, Allard and his fellow drivers knew that everyone would choose the lane most likely to take grip, and in turn, passing would not be an easy task. That in mind, it would prove essential to take an early lead.
Starting the feature race on the front row, Allard and his team’s chances of a reputable finish were favorable.
When the waving of the green flag deemed the race underway, Jonathan Allard found Craig Dollansky the only obstacle between him and the lead position. Recognizing the track conditions would likely have an adverse affect on his tires, Allard drove smart yet aggressive. He managed to “get up on his rear bumper at times”, but as suspected prior to the start, passing proved practically impossible.
Allard’s only hope was for his fellow driver to falter or make a mistake, but Dollansky drove a flawless race. In turn, Jonathan Allard took a second place finish, still earning a spot on the podium.
“As a racer, you are never happy with second place,” explained the driver. “But as a team, we were pleased with the second place run against the best drivers in the world. It is always tough to beat them, and it was a great night to measure our team so early in the season.”
With the bulk of 2013 in front of him, Jonathan Allard considers the ability to finish races as the key to success. The driver also knows the importance of his team. “Racing is a team sport,” shared Allard. “Without my guys and my car owners, Morrie and Kate Williams, nothing would be possible. They get the car ready during the week, and at the track, the are working their tails off to make sure it is the best it can be based on what the track is doing.”
Allard and his crew are also acutely aware of the importance of maintenance. That in mind, they are strong advocates of depending upon K&N filters to keep their engines debris free. K&N provides such great products for our team,” he explained. “We are on the cutting edge, with the long-term reliability that it takes to win races and championships. K&N has always been very involved with our team and provides us the situation of feeling like family.”
With confidence, a reliable team and proper maintenance at his disposal, Jonathan Allard is anticipating a successful run in 2013. When asked what fans can expect during the upcoming season, Allard said, “We look to defend our 2012 King of the West Championship. We will also run select World of Outlaw shows out west, and hopefully, make a trip back to the Knoxville Nationals.”
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Other K&N sprint car news about Jonathan Allard: Williams Motorsports' Jonathan Allard Wins King of the West Championship in 410ci Sprint Car; 360 Knoxville Nationals K&N Sponsored Sprint Car Racers Flood the Field at Iowa Raceway; Jonathan Allard Wins a Remarkable 11 Times out of 15 Starts in New Zealand and Trip to Western Springs Speedway in Aukland; New Zealand Pays Off for Sprint Car Driver Jonathan Allard