Hoping to finish season strong

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After a 16th at Kentucky, one of her best results of the season, Johanna Long was geared for a strong finish in the closing weeks.

I can’t believe it is already October. As the temperature cools off here in North Carolina, it still is heating up on the race track.

The NASCAR season is a long one, running from February to November, so we only have a handful of weeks left in the season to get as many solid finishes as we can. Two weeks ago, I competed at Kentucky Speedway, and I had one of the strongest races of our season, finishing 16th, which is great. Our team hopes this momentum will continue to push us.

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Johanna Long takes some time out to sign autographs at Kentucky Speedway.

As much as we travel, it’s hard to be so far away from my family and friends. I grew up in Pensacola, Fla., and moved to Charlotte, N.C., to fulfill my dream of competing in NASCAR. Charlotte is the central area for most race teams, so it made sense for me to move to be around my peers and the resources. I don’t get a lot of time go to back to Pensacola, but last week I was able to spend a few days there with family and friends. I even had a little down time to hop on the jet ski and four-wheeler.

The main reason for my trip back home, however, was to race in a pro late model race at the track I grew up racing on. I love to compete there because it is where I truly found my love for racing. My homecoming did not go exactly as I had expected as I was collected in an incident during the race, but it was still fun to be on the track.

We have two races in October -- Kansas Speedway this past weekend and then Charlotte Motor Speedway on Friday. My team and I had a very strong qualifying run at Kansas last year but were involved in an incident midway through, so I was really excited to go back out and run there again. This year I finished 24th.

As for Charlotte, it is the racing hub for NASCAR, so no matter what is going on it is always a big deal to get to race there, plus it helps that it’s only a 20-minute drive.

I hope you are able to follow along as we finish this year strong!