Things just keep getting better for Luke Johnson in his PEAK Motor Oil Red Bull Undead Power #14 Pro Buggy. After five straight wins to open the 2013 Traxxas TORC Series and his first career win at “The Big House” in Crandon, WI, Luke traveled to Chicagoland Speedway to continue his destruction through the Pro Buggy Class. Luke is en route to one of the most spectacular seasons in TORC history and after stacking two more wins at Chicagoland, inches closer to his first career championship.
After an extra long stint in the Midwest prepping for both Bark River and Crandon, Luke returned to his home base in Southern California to dial in his buggy before making the trek to Chicago. A seventh place finish last round left Luke anxious to get back on the track and more importantly back on the podium.
There was an unusually high amount of energy as the grandstands began to fill up under the lights. In typical 2013 season fashion, a storm began to stir amongst the eager field of fourteen pro buggy drivers but never made it to the track. Luke started in the middle of the pack but made quick work of the traffic and immediately found his way upfront to challenge rival, John Frana, who pocketed Luke’s checkered flag in Round 8. It only took a few laps for Luke to close in on Frana and take over the number one spot. Andy Zipperer was hot on his tail. Unfortunately, after Maggie Zipperer flipped her pro buggy, track officials waived a full course caution, which bunched all the vehicles back up.
When racing resumed, Zipperer squeaked by and Luke now found him self once again chasing the leader. Luke stayed both calm and collected and waited for an opportunity to make a clean pass. As the two began to feel the heat from the traffic behind them, Luke capitalized on a check up from Zipperer and took over the lead. With open air, Luke checked out and took his sixth checkered flag this season.
“It’s an indescribable feeling the way things are going this year. Today, I had to fight all race and that speaks volumes to my team and sponsors that help get my buggy in a position to win,” stated Luke.
Frana went on to finish the race in sixth place, which meant Luke’s lead in overall standings in the pro buggy class grew bigger. With the midway through the season now reached, Luke knows it’s no time to let up. Frana started on the poll on Sunday and took the hole shot coming out of turn one. With the points inversion, Luke started in sixth place alongside previous days challenger, Andy Zipperer. By lap three, Luke moved all the way to second and caught up to Frana, who had built a sizable lead on the pack.
Luke’s strong point of the half-mile oval track was the rhythm section, which he conquered by the end of the weekend. Luke took over the lead from Frana in this section and never looked back to finish the race in front of Frana, second, and Steve Krieman, third.
After the two wins in Chicagoland, Luke has more than doubled his commanding lead in the class. Fifty-two points now separates him from second place. With only six rounds remaining, the thought of a championship is now as real as it gets. Focus and determination has been the heart of Luke’s program in 2013 and will continue to be at Red Bud in Buchanon, MI for Rounds 11 & 12 of the Traxxas TORC Series.
Sponsor Undead Power has partnered with Luke to run a special online promotion. Go to www.lenmar.com and enter discount code “LJ14” to receive 10% off purchases. 10% of all Powered by Lenmar products purchased will also go to Luke Johnson’s new Pro 2 Truck!