The Pro Stock field for the inaugural Scag Power Equipment PRO Superstar Shootout presented by Johnson’s Horsepowered Garage just grew by one driver and three Pro Stock world championships. Jason Line, who retired from driving after the 2020 season, will make his return to the driver’s seat at the $125,000-to-win event set for February 8-10, 2024, at Bradenton Motorsports Park. Line will drive an entry fielded by Elite Motorsports.
Line was adamant that he was done driving 500-cubic-inch Pro Stock cars when he announced his pending retirement at the beginning of the 2020 season, but a weekend spent working with former teammate Bo Butner and his Elite-fielded entry at the Lucas Oil NHRA Nationals at Brainerd International Raceway in Line’s home state of Minnesota changed that. When Elite Motorsports team owner Richard Freeman offered him a ride at the PRO Superstar Shootout, Line couldn’t say no.
“Richard is very persuasive,” Line laughed. “It’s very easy for us drivers – well, I’m an ex-driver – to poke fun at each other. Richard was like, ‘Do you think you could still do it?’ I said, ‘Of course I think I can still do it.’ He sort of coerced me into trying again. I think it’d be fun. I said I’d never drive one again, but that’s why you never say never. I certainly don’t want to go race on a weekly basis again. At this stage of my life, that’s not where I’m at. But to do it once, especially at this event, I think it’s really a cool thing.”
Line joins a list of 19 other Pro Stock drivers who will attempt to qualify for the 16-car field at the PRO Superstar Shootout. Once qualified, drivers will do random chip draws to determine pairings in eliminations. The winner will walk away with $125,000.
“I want to try to give something back to the sport that’s been very good to me,” Line said. “I think supporting this event is important. I think it’s just a really cool event, and if I can support it in some way, I’m happy to do that.”
Line will compete alongside Elite Motorsports teammates Erica Enders, Troy Coughlin Jr., Bo Butner, Aaron Stanfield, Fernando Cuadra Jr., Fernando Cuadra Sr., Cristian Cuadra, and Jerry Don Tucker.
“What better place to give Jason an opportunity to get back behind the wheel than the Scag PRO Superstar Shootout,” Freeman said. “He’s always been a huge competitor, but a friend at the same time. We’re excited about having him be behind the wheel of an Elite Motorsports Pro Stock car. Jason brings added value to our program as more than just a driver as we go out there for that big money and try to make something happen. We’re just glad to have him be a part of our deal.”
Line spent a good chunk of his career competing against Elite Motorsports drivers like Enders and Jeg Coughlin Jr., who also retired after the 2020 season. Now, he’s set to join the group as a driver with one of the largest purses in Pro Stock history on the line. It’s a unique opportunity that appeals to both Line and Freeman.
“Richard’s really a character, and he’s been really good for the sport and certainly for the class,” Line said. “No matter what, I think it’ll be fun. I got a little taste of that by going to Brainerd and watching them operate.
“I’m a little apprehensive about it on one hand because it’s already been a few years since I’ve driven,” Line continued. “I’d like to think I can still do it. We’re going to find out. I’m sure I won’t be exempt from being critiqued, that’s for sure, but it’ll be fun. I certainly appreciate Richard offering me the opportunity.”
Tickets for the Scag Power Equipment PRO Superstar Shootout presented by JHG are on sale now at https://bit.ly/scagpro. Fans who can’t attend the race can watch the FloRacing livestream at https://flosports.link/3KQGS4I.
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