James McFadden Earns Emotional Victory in Jason Johnson Classic

(Photo Credits: Trent Gower Photo)
(Photo Credits: Trent Gower Photo)

Kasey Kahne Racing and its driver James McFadden raced to an emotional World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series victory on Saturday night at Lake Ozark Speedway. In a race that was dedicated to former World of Outlaws sprint car driver Jason Johnson, who passed away following a frightening crash at Beaver Dam Raceway in 2018, Australian based driver McFadden made his long-awaited return to the United States after five months to continue running the Karavan Trailers #9 car for Kasey Kahne Racing and taking this run to a long-awaited and exciting win.

While the lack of history at this 1/3-mile speedway would not lead fans to select McFadden and his team for the victory, the lack of numbers or the faith of fans meant nothing to the driver who cut his teeth on bullring tracks in Australia.

Kasey Kahne Racing dominated this 41 Lap Memorial Race on Saturday night after McFadden’s fellow team driver Brad Sweet set the quick time in qualifying. Sweet and McFadden also both went on to win their Drydene Heat Races, while McFadden won the DIRTVision Fast Pass Dash, holding off Sweet for the win.

The teammates held the top two spots for the entire Feature with the No. 9 of McFadden starting on the pole and No. 49 of Sweet following right behind. While Sweet closed in on his Australian teammate during various points of this race and tried to throw a slider on him in Turns 3 and 4 twice. Both attempts failed as Sweet had to bail on his attempt or risk plowing into the side of McFadden. Each time Sweet bailed on his slider and lost three car lengths to McFadden and allowed third-place Donny Schatz to close on him. On a restart with 13 laps to go, McFadden, Sweet and Schatz went three-wide for the lead, but their epic battle ended with another caution before the lap was completed.
With a handle on the high groove in the closing laps, McFadden beat Sweet to the finish line by nearly two seconds.

“To get this victory is huge,” said McFadden. “Jason Johnson was a close friend of both mine and my family’s. We spent a lot of time together in Australia in the past and to honor him with this win is unreal.”

Although Sweet did not pull off  this win, the Kasey Kahne Racing driver continues to keep his team in the points lead as the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series races into Kokomo Speedway, in Kokomo, IN, this Saturday, October 24. Stay tuned to RacingJunk.com for the latest from the World of Outlaws as well as for all of your dirt racing news.

About Ellen Richardson 491 Articles
Ellen Richardson is the author of Behind The Wheel for RacingJunk.com. This automotive sports junkie has a passion for telling an athlete's story while also covering various racing activities. Find out more about her at ellennrichardson.wordpress.com or follow Ellen on Twitter at @ellennrich or Instagram at elnrich33.

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