Jonathan Sauter (born May 1, 1978, in Necedah, Wisconsin) is a NASCAR driver from Wisconsin. Sauter is the son of former NASCAR driver Jim Sauter, and the brother of NASCAR drivers Tim Sauter and Jay Sauter. He currently drives the #13 Fun Sand/Rodney Atkins/Curb Records Chevrolet Silverado 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 LaCrosse Fairgrounds Speedway. Emboldened by his success, Sauter joined the American Speed Association Series in 1998. By 2001, he was the ASA Series Championship.
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 finsishes 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, Satuer 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 Edit
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 will return to the trucks in 2009, replacing Shelby Howard in the #13 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.
|Jay Sauter | Jim Sauter | Johnny Sauter | Tim Sauter|