||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (September 2013)|
Sauter in 2007
May 1, 1978 |
Necedah, Wisconsin, U.S.
|Achievements||2001 ASA National Tour Champion|
|Awards||2009 Camping World Truck Series Rookie of the Year
2001 ASA National Tour Rookie of the Year
|NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career|
|83 race(s) run over 9 year(s)|
|Best finish||30th (2007)|
|First race||2003 Tropicana 400 (Chicago)|
|Last race||2013 Sylvania 300 (Loudon)|
|NASCAR Nationwide Series career|
|202 race(s) run over 10 year(s)|
|Best finish||8th (2003, 2006)|
|First race||2001 Autolite / Fram 250 (Richmond)|
|Last race||2012 DRIVE4COPD 300 (Daytona)|
|First win||2002 Tropicana Twister 300 (Chicago)|
|Last win||2005 SBC 250 (Milwaukee)|
|NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career|
|130 race(s) run over 10 year(s)|
|Truck no., team||No. 98 (ThorSport Racing)|
|Best finish||2nd (2011)|
|First race||2003 O'Reilly 200 (Bristol)|
|Last race||2013 Ford EcoBoost 200 (Homestead)|
|First win||2009 Las Vegas 350 (Las Vegas)|
|Last win||2013 Fred's 250 (Talladega)|
|Statistics current as of November 17, 2013.|
Jonathan Joseph "Johnny" Sauter (born May 1, 1978, in Necedah, Wisconsin) is a NASCAR driver from Wisconsin. Sauter is the son of former NASCAR driver Jim Sauter, the brother of NASCAR drivers Tim Sauter and Jay Sauter, and the uncle of Travis Sauter. He currently drives the No. 98 Carolina Nut Company/Curb Records Toyota Tundra for ThorSport Racing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
After graduating high school in 1996, Sauter began competing in various amateur series throughout Wisconsin and the Midwest. By the end of 1997, Sauter had collected three wins in the Sportsman Division at Dells Raceway Park and a win in the Late Model Division at the La Crosse Fairgrounds Speedway. Sauter then joined the American Speed Association Series in 1998. By 2001, he was the ASA Series Champion.
In 2001, following Sauter's ASA Championship, Richard Childress Racing invited him to drive the #21 Rockwell Automation Chevrolet in five Busch Series races. Sauter finished in the top 15 in three of his five Busch starts, including a 5th-place finish at AutoLite Fram 250 in Richmond, his first start.
In 2002, Childress hired Sauter to run a full Busch Series schedule in the #2 AC Delco Chevrolet. He notched five top-10 finishes, including his first Busch Series win in the Tropicana Twister 300 at the Chicagoland Speedway, despite skipping one race. In 2003, Sauter drove for Childress Racing and the Curb Agajanian Performance Group in the Busch Series, piloting the #21 PayDay Chevrolet and the #43 Channellock/Curb Records Chevrolet. He captured fourteen top-10 finishes in 34 Busch Series starts, including a win at Richmond in the #43. Sauter finished the 2003 season 8th in the driver standings and, together with Kevin Harvick, led the #21 car to the owners' points championship.
During the 2003 season, Sauter also made his Winston Cup debut, driving the #4 Kodak Easy Share Pontiac Grand Prix for five races with Morgan-McClure Motorsports. His best start in five races was a 23rd at Loudon, and he also missed a race at Kansas Speedway. He also ran three races in the Craftsman Truck Series for Fasscore Motorsports, and had a tenth-place run at Richmond. Childress hired Sauter to drive the #30 AOL Chevrolet in Winston Cup full-time in 2004. After thirteen races, he was replaced by Dave Blaney, but later attempted two races in Childress' #33 car, but did not qualify for either of them. Towards the end of the season, he began running the #09 Miccosukee Gaming & Resorts Dodge Intrepid for Phoenix Racing, and had a best finish of 29th. He also ran a full Busch schedule with Brewco Motorsports that season, driving the #27 Kleenex Pontiac to an eighteenth place points finish.
Sauter joined Phoenix full-time in 2005, with Yellow Transportation becoming the team's primary sponsor. He had eleven top-ten finishes and a win at his home track at Milwaukee, and improved his position in points to twelfth for the year. He and Phoenix also competed in ten Cup races, posting a ninth-place finish at Phoenix International Raceway.
2006 - present
After the 2005 season, Sauter and Yellow moved to the #00 Haas CNC Racing Chevrolet for the next season. He had one pole and nine top-tens, and tied his best finish of eighth in series points. He made one Cup start that season that year at the Coca-Cola 600, and finished 24th. He moved up to a new Cup team for a new team for Haas, the #70, in 2007. Driving with sponsorship from Yellow, Best Buy, Haas Automation, and Radioactive Energy Drink, Sauter had two top-tens but finished 30th in points. He competed in six Busch races that year with Jay Robinson Racing, but could not finish higher than 23rd.
Sauter was dropped from the #70 after the season, and rejoined Phoenix Racing for the 2008 season, where he was released after five races. He has since spent time as a substitute driver for many teams, starting at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, where he was unable to qualify the #21 McKee Foods Ford. He soon returned to Haas to drive several races in their #70, with a best finish of 20th, as well as attempting several races for John Carter. After one-off starts for Fitz Motorsports and Bob Schact in the Nationwide Series, he drove for Curb Agajanian Performance Group and Derrike Cope Racing, but did not complete a race for either team. He also drove one Truck race at Martinsville for SS-Green Light Racing. Sauter returned to the trucks in 2009, replacing Shelby Howard in the #13 FunSand truck for ThorSport Racing in association with Cary Agajanian. Sauter won his first ever Truck Series race at the Las Vegas, holding off teammate Matt Crafton for the win. Sauter beat Tayler Malsam in the NASCAR Rookie of the Year standings. For 2010, Sauter attempted the #35 Chevy for Tommy Baldwin Racing for 3 races and took over the #36 ride after Phoenix with little success. He also drove some late-season races for Prism Motorsports in the #66 Toyota. He picked up his second career truck win in 2010 at Kansas after a late race collision and save with Ron Hornaday Jr..
Sauter grabbed his 3rd career victory at Martinsville in 2011, battling Kyle Busch on the last lap. Despite winning the season-finale at the Ford 200, he lost the championship to Austin Dillon by 6 points.
In 2013, Sauter started the season with his first win at Daytona International Speedway in the NextEra Energy Resources 250. It was also Toyota's 100th Camping World Truck Series win. On April 6, Sauter won the Kroger 250 at Martinsville Speedway. It was only the second time in Truck Series history that someone has won back to back season opening wins since Mark Martin did it in 2006.
- "Sauter does his best, but Dillon claims Truck title". NASCAR.com. Turner Sports. November 21, 2011. Retrieved 2012-06-10.
- "Johnny Sauter finds redemption in truck win at Texas". Sporting News. June 9, 2012. Retrieved 2012-06-10.
- Spencer, Reid (February 22, 2013). "Sauter Triumph Gives Toyota 100Th Trucks Win". NASCAR. Retrieved February 22, 2013.
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Gary St. Amant
|ASA National Tour Champion
|Awards and achievements|
|NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Rookie of the Year