Rarely does lightning strike twice in the same exact spot on planet earth. The perfect set of circumstances are necessary for thousands of volts to crash down from the sky and produce a thunderous roar over the landscape. Jonathan Findley is looking to do just that in the region that runs deep in his roots. An upset victory in 2020 was Jonathan Findley’s lone CARS Tour Late Model Stock win since he began with the series in 2019. Findley looks for a strong run as he is tracking his roots in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
“Growing up I was always told don’t take anything for granted. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t do anything.” Findley rightly drives with a chip on his shoulder, his team still operates as a family and friends affair.
Bristow, Virginia is Findley’s hometown. Due to its pronunciation, It’s often confused with Bristol which is well to the south and west of the small Northern Virginia town. His family has ties to the original Old Dominion Speedway in Manassas, which ran Cup series races from 1958 to 1966. Jonathan Findley’s grandfather of the same name had a hand in the establishment of the Late Model Stock Car class.
“My grandfather John Findley and my grandmother’s cousin Al Daly; between him and Dicky Gore, who owned Old Dominion Speedway back in the 80s, started the Late Model Stock class. Back in 1980, it was built towards how a true stock car would run on the street. They ran stock bottom ends, stock snouts, carburetors, and exhausts. It has changed a lot since then”
Findley recalls turning laps at the historic speedway before it was closed and the new Dominion Raceway became established.
“I’m very in tune with Old Dominion Speedway. I used to race Bandoleros up there before they shut it down. I raced one mini stock race up there we started last and won that and moved on.”
Jonathan Findley has turned a lot of laps at the current Thornburg location. He credits his driving style and familiarity with how the track changes for why he is a solid competitor at Dominion.
“I’m aggressive and up on the wheel. With Dominion still having fresh pavement, it suits how I drive. Having laps and experience there really helps”.
Findley has had a rollercoaster season so far in 2021. He has had 3 DNFs due to mechanical issues. He has been involved in some incidents and roared back for solid top ten runs. At Caraway Speedway, Findley was sent to the rear three times for being involved in the caution and still came back to finish seventh. His team has a few financial obstacles that other teams may not have to overcome.
Findley has seen the new tire rule that has been in effect since Caraway as an advantage to his team. “We’re not built financially like other people,” Findley said. We don’t have the funding to just waste on tires, so that helps our situation. We’re not in a position to use up four sets of tires a weekend practicing. They’re trying to make top speed so they can qualify well. We’re trying to make the car as good as possible for the long run.”
Findley is still learning the craft in his early 20s. He has some excellent people in his corner to help with his racing endeavors. “This year we’ve been with Wendell Davis, he’s been a help to us, and Dennis Brock. Dennis has been around me and has been helping me with my driving since we started with Late Model Stocks. He’s been a huge help to me with the car.”
Findley had Solid Rock Carriers and GSX Wraps to thank for the financial support to run in the Late Model Stock Car class. RPM Group was another company that the Findley family appreciates for the help that they have provided.
Jonathan Findley hopes that lightning is in a bottle somewhere beneath the blacktop of the still fresh-looking pavement for the Radley Chevrolet 125. The race will run at 7 pm. Fans can follow the action live at carstour.tv and follow race22 on Facebook for live updates. Race22.com is your hub for articles, pictures, recaps, and all things Late Model Stock Cars.