In Drag Racing, our "Super Bowl" or "Daytona 500" is U.S. Nationals and takes place in Indianapolis, Indiana. It is the biggest, baddest, and richest and most prestigious drag race on the planet. FOX covers the five day event where the best of the best bring everything they've got to try to win this race and take home all the money. In short, if you are ever all in, this is the race to make it happen. On Labor Day weekend, Steve Johnson and his team were all in and won the race in exciting fashion. The real excitement for Johnson was celebrating in the winner's circle; something he missed visiting during his first U.S. Nationals win.
You see, that was the year an electronic error first gave the victory to his opponent in a race so close that Johnson himself was stunned at the outcome. As he turned off the track aboard his Suzuki, he turned to the assembled media and plaintively asked, “I lost?” It was a bitter pill to swallow, but less than 24 hours later, after careful examination of the race video it was apparent to all that Johnson had won by almost a wheel width.
On the NHRA Pro Stock circuit, there are few riders who work harder at competing or promoting the sport than Steve Johnson. Along with a reputation for being a tireless worker, Johnson is also known for his outgoing personality. The combination of his sunny disposition and work ethic makes Johnson one of the most popular competitors on the circuit.
Besides back to back wins at the U.S. Nationals and the inaugural Carolina Nationals in the heart of NASCAR country in Charlotte, North Carolina, Johnson still likes hanging out and dirt bike riding, Scuba diving, golf, NASCAR and eating…but just in the off season. “Eating good and having some strength are important,” says Johnson. “But riding a Pro Stock bike that goes 0-60mph in a second and travels a ¼ mile at just under 200mph in 6.8 seconds is all about finesse and being in shape.”
Johnson also has a national program for high school and tech school students called "Marketing your Brand after the Diploma". It's a 45 minute high energy, interactive presentation that covers:
- Soft skills needed to launch a career
- College, tech school, military or straight to work
- Developing a personal brand to get the job
- Short racing video, STEM info and very good prizes
- On stage mock interviews with students
- Students competing with an NHRA reaction timer
"I'm really proud of the program and the input I get back from the students. Everyone isn't wired for college and we point out that you (the students) can be successful in life without five years in college and all the debt," says Steve.