There was only one problem-the '88 simply couldn't match the times of the old '86. Nothing that Roger did would make the '88 Corvette competitive with the yellow '86. If Roger Johnson, Kim Baker, and John Lingenfelter's combined expertise couldn't make the '88 run as fast as the older car, all hope was gone. Fortunately, no one had come up with the required cash to purchase the "old car" so the "For Sale" signs were taken off the '86 and placed on the '88. It was back to Old Yellow.
Roger has tried C5s but feels that they have major limitations for competitive autocrossing. A great many other Corvette autocrossers apparently agree with him, as you seldom see a C5 at autocrosses, other than Corvettes-only events. Some have tried, but few have succeeded, except with Z06s, at the SCCA level of competition.
The one thing that Roger Johnson has proven is that if you start off with the "right" car, stick with that car, and develop it, you can have a winner. While most of us try the latest trick part of the week, or maybe even the trick car of the month and stay also-rans, Roger just keeps running up the miles on his old yellow '86, and keeps right on winning.
While the rest of the autocross fraternity keep looking for that magic part that will make our Corvette the fastest one on the planet, Roger just keeps driving better. There comes a time when you might finally realize that one of the biggest keys to being fast is really learning how to drive. Roger Johnson learned that a long time ago. It's taking a little longer for most of the rest of us to learn that basic fact.
Richard F. Newton has written two best-selling Corvette books, How to Modify and Restore Your Corvette: 1968 to 1982 and Corvette Restoration Guide: 1963 to 1967. These are both available from Motorbooks International at (800) 826-6600 or www.motorbooks.com, or from many Corvette mail order parts and accessories suppliers.