|credit: NASCAR via Getty Images/Jonathan Ferrey|
A few weeks ago, Johnny Sauter became the first driver to punch his ticket for the inaugural Camping World Truck Series Championship Four – on November 18, 2016, he became the first Truck Series Chase-era champion. Learn more about his career and championship season in this week’s Fast Facts.
- Jonathan Joseph Sauter was born May 1, 1978 in Necedah, WI. He is the son of former NASCAR driver Jim Sauter, and his brothers Tim and Jay also competed in all three top NASCAR Series.
- Sauter began racing in numerous series in Wisconsin and the Midwest following his graduation from high school in 1996, eventually joining the American Speed Association (ASA) in 1998; in 2001, Sauter was crowned ASA National Tour champ and Rookie of the Year.
- Sauter’s ASA title earned him a five-race Busch (now Xfinity) Series deal with Richard Childress Racing at the end of 2001; he earned three top 15 finishes in those five starts and a full-time ride with RCR in the series for 2002, when he won his first race at Chicagoland Speedway. In 2003 he split seat time with RCR and the Curb-Agajanian Performance Group; Sauter combined with Kevin Harvick in the RCR No. 21 to win the Busch Series’ owners’ championship. He also made his Cup Series and his Craftsman (now Camping World) Truck Series debuts in 2003.
- Through the three series, Sauter has driven for numerous teams, including Morgan-McClure Motorsports, Phoenix Racing, Brewco Motorsports, Haas CNC Racing, Tommy Baldwin Racing, Prism Motorsports and ThorSport Racing.
- Sauter has raced full-time in the Camping World Truck Series since 2009, earning his first career Truck Series win at Las Vegas in 2009 and also winning the series’ Rookie of the Year Award that year. Sauter joined GMS Racing for the 2016 season, winning in his debut with the team at Daytona. He added wins at Martinsville and Texas before the Championship Four at Homestead-Miami Speedway, and brought home his first Truck Series title with a third-place finish. Sauter earned 19 top 10 finishes – including 12 top fives – in 23 races.
- Sauter and his wife Cortney have three children, son Penn Joseph and daughters Paige and Anne.
- Find out more about Sauter at his website, www.johnny-sauter.com.