Johnny Sauter Hoping to be Better Than Average at Michigan

Aug 15, 2014

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Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn is the site of race No. 12 on the 2014 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) schedule. Historically, Johnny Sauter’s results at the two-mile oval don’t reflect the ThorSport Racing teams performance in Michigan’s Irish Hills – something the Necedah, Wisc. native would like to change for the Careers for Veterans 200 on Saturday.

Over the first 11 stops on the 2014 NCWTS schedule, Sauter has finished ahead of his Average Running Position (ARP) an impressive eight times. The last time the Truck Series was in action at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway, he entered with an ARP of 18.224 and left with a season-best runner-up finish. With his impressive results at “The Tricky Triangle,” Sauter has now produced three top-five finishes at tracks that rank among his five worst in terms of ARP. The veteran driver hopes to continue that trend this weekend at MIS, where he has an ARP of 11.067 across five starts that have resulted in three top-15 and five top-20 finishes.

Rank Track ARP (Pre-Race) 2014 Race Results
1 Texas Motor Speedway 6.237 7
2 Iowa Speedway 6.381 18
3 Gateway Motorsports Park 6.412 4
4 Kansas Speedway 7.237 21
5 Dover International Speedway 9.783 3
6 Kentucky Speedway 10.235 9
7 Michigan International Speedway 11.067 N/A
8 Martinsville Speedway 12.827 4
9 Charlotte Motor Speedway 12.847 6
10 Eldora Speedway 16.230 8
11 Pocono Raceway 18.224 2
12 Daytona International Speedway 21.211 3

Sounding Off – Johnny Sauter:
“I feel like Michigan kind of owes me one. We’ve had some good runs there, just not great finishes. Last year, I was wrecked on lap three and ended up with a 20th-place finish. In 2012, we were running second and had to make a green-flag pit stop for fuel. In 2011, we were running fifth and I just spun out on my own. In 2010, we just didn’t run well and in 2009, we were running sixth coming to the white flag and I blew a left rear tire. Michigan has just been a place where we’ve had zero results and that’s why it’s not been one of my favorite race tracks. I don’t really mind the track, I feel good about it, and it’s a track we should be able to go run well at. If we can put together a solid finish like we did at Pocono a couple weeks ago, another track that I’ve historically struggled at, we should be able to bring home a solid finish this weekend and gain more points in the championship standings.”

Sauter’s Michigan Stats:
• Five starts
• 467 of 502 laps completed (93.0%)
• One lap led (2011)
• Top-five’s: 0
• Top-10’s: 0
• Best start: 6th (2009, 2010, 2013)
• Best finish: 11th (2012)
• Avg. start: 8.6
• Avg. finish: 14.8
• According to NASCAR’s Loop Data Statistics, Sauter ranks:
  º Fifth in Laps in the Top 15 (360)
  º Eighth in Fastest Laps Run (9)
  º 10th in Average Running Position (11.067)
  º 12th in Driver Rating (85.9)

NCWTS Results at Michigan:

Date Start Finish Laps Status Led
6/13/2009 6 16 98/100 Running 0
6/12/2010 6 14 100/100 Running 0
8/20/2011 14 13 102/102 Running 1
8/18/2012 6 11 100/100 Running 0
8/17/2013 11 20 67/100 Running 0

Johnny Sauter 2014:
• After a runner-up finish at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway, Sauter moved up to second in the 2014 NCWTS driver point standings, seven markers behind series point leader Ryan Blaney
• Recorded a season-best third-place finish twice at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway and Dover (Del.) International Speedway
• Recorded a season-best third-place start at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City
• In 11 starts in 2014, Sauter has five top-five and nine top-10 finishes
• Has led 64 laps
• Has completed 95.2% of laps attempted (1664 of 1748)
• According to NASCAR’s Loop Data Statistics, Sauter ranks:
  º Third in Average Running Position (8.385)
  º Third in Laps in the Top-15 (1536)
  º Fourth in Driver Rating (95.2)
  º Eighth in Fastest Laps Run (46)
  º Eighth in Laps Led (64)

Sauter’s Career Truck Series Stats:
• 141 starts since 2003
• Nine wins
• 53 top-five finishes
• 79 top-10 finishes
• Five poles
• 21,416 laps completed
• 1069 laps led
• Average start: 10.7
• Average finish: 11.0

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ThorSport Racing, based in a state-of-the-art 100,000-square-foot facility in Sandusky, Ohio, is the longest-tenured NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team. ThorSport, which has run in the Truck Series since 1996, in 2014 will run the No. 88 Menards Toyota Tundra driven by 2013 drivers’ champion Matt Crafton, the No. 98 Nextant Aerospace/Smokey Mountain Herbal Snuff/Carolina Nut Co./Curb Records Toyota Tundra driven by Johnny Sauter and the No. 13 Carolina Nut Co. Toyota Tundra driven by Jeb Burton in the Truck Series and the No. 13 Toyota Camry in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards.