News & Multimedia

Johanna Long: All Access Part 2

First and Foremost, I want to thank everyone for reading my blogs and for your continued support of me and the entire ML Motorsports team! It means so much to all of us!

It’s the day after the Subway Jalapeno 250 powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway and I’m on the road headed back to my hometown, Pensacola, FL for a week since I have a little downtime before our next race. For those of you who watched the race at Daytona, you probably already know that it was one crazy and exciting race. The ML Motorsports Wish for Our Heroes team did an awesome job preparing our No. 70 Chevy because it was a rocket all week long, and I couldn’t be more proud of the guys for all of their hard work.

We are now 11 races into our 21-race schedule. As you all know, this year has been a huge learning curve for me as I take to new tracks, cars and a new team. I feel like I’ve had some really strong races this year, but as a perfectionist on the track, I can always be better. The last several races have been our team’s best performances thus far starting at Michigan, Kentucky and then Daytona.

I had my second-best NASCAR Nationwide Series finish of 16th at Michigan International Speedway. Our No. 70 ML Motorsports Chevrolet was sporty from the time it hit the track and we ran competitively in the top-15 all day before the very end of the race. Kentucky was a different story. If you know anything about me and my racing background; you probably have picked up on the fact that I’m really good at qualifying. I don’t know why, but I’ve always been able to pull off a good lap time whether the car is handling well or not. It’s just been a strong point of mine. However, Kentucky was not the case.

I drove into turn one extremely too hard during qualifying, especially for the mid-day heat. I got into one and then slid up the track sideways coming off of turn two. I must say, experiences like that are definitely humbling because that has NEVER, I repeat NEVER happened to me before. Luckily, our team was locked in, so we started the 200-lap event from the rear of the 43-car field. Even though it was a rough start, our team overcame adversity and we had one of our best races. We ended up finishing inside the top-20 in the 19th position. It was a race to be proud of for sure.

Last but not least, Daytona…this race was extremely intense! From the drop of the green flag there was a lot of 3-wide and 4-wide action going on. All I could do is try to race smart while holding my breath as my spotter worked his tail off all night in order to keep us out of the wrecks. Our car was strong throughout the race as we got up as far as 6th on the charts. The green-white-checkered finish hurt us the most as teams started to team up on the restart. We got left out to dry on the last stretch, but was able to salvage a strong 12th finish. All in all, it was a great run for us and I couldn’t be prouder of our team.

Now that I've looked back, it’s time to look forward. I’m so anxious for the next two races on our schedule including Indianapolis Motor Speedway. If you’re in the pits at Indy, you should come to the ML Motorsports pit stall before the start of the race. My dad said he will probably be in tears. That shows you how special and sentimental racing at this track really is. I’m so excited! I hope you all enjoyed this blog and I can’t wait to share more of my experiences leading up to the most anticipated race of the year, the Indy 250!!! I’m smiling ear-to-ear just thinking about it! =)

-Johanna
 

Show More Show Less
Now Viewing
Johanna Long: All Access
 
Johanna Long: All Access Part 2
Read More
Related Media
Graham Rahal
 
Monday Racing Roundup: Rahal Thrills Ohio Fans, Inches Closer to Montoya
Rahal's surge in the second half of the Verizon IndyCar Series season continued with his second win in five weeks. Rahal, who started 13th in the 90-lap race in the No. 15 Steak 'n Shake Honda for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, closed to nine points of Verizon IndyCar Series championship front-runner Juan Pablo Montoya with two races left in the season. There are 10 entries mathematically eligible for the title.
Read More
Kyle Busch
 
Reorder 2016 Tickets Now to Get Special Deals for Crown Royal Presents the "Your Hero's Name Here" 400 at the Brickyard
As a special thank you to the world’s greatest race fans, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is offering special pricing for selected days to those who reorder their 2016 Crown Royal Presents the “Your Hero’s Name Here” 400 at the Brickyard tickets by Monday, Aug. 10.
Read More
Sherwin-Williams
 
Sherwin-Williams Joins IMS, INDYCAR as Official Partner in Multi-Year Agreement
Sherwin-Williams, an industry leader in paint and coatings, will serve as the Official Paint and Finishing Partner of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, INDYCAR, the Verizon IndyCar Series, Indianapolis 500 Mile Race, Angie’s List Grand Prix of Indianapolis and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Crown Royal 400 at the Brickyard as part of a multi-year partnership agreement.
Read More
Kyle Busch
 
Kyle Busch Wins 2015 Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at the Brickyard
Kyle Busch scored one of the biggest wins of his career on Sunday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, holding off Joey Logano in a green-white-checkered finish to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Crown Royal Presents the Jeff Kyle 400 at the Brickyard.
Read More
Lauren Holliday
 
Indianapolis' Women's World Cup Hero Excited for Pace Car Drive
The Indianapolis native used that speed with her feet to lead the United States women’s national soccer team to two Olympic gold medals, and most recently, the 2015 Women’s World Cup championship.
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 644
Reserve one of our hospitality suites for your next event!
To start planning your event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway please fill out our Information Request Form or contact Laura Wyamn at (317) 492-8557 or email at lwyman@brickyard.com.
Latest Tweets
.@MotoGP is back from summer break and ready to ride at IMS in ONLY 5 days! #IndyGP http://t.co/ccJmir47Il http://t.co/dryTbK1Wd5
about 15 hours ago