Jimmie Johnson comes out of retirement, returns to NASCAR

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Jimmie Johnson, 47, is about to return to the NASCAR household after asserting his retirement from full-time racing solely in September.

The seven-time NASCAR champion introduced final week that he’s returning to the Cup Sequence, not solely as a driver but in addition an element proprietor of Petty GMS, a workforce which additionally calls fellow seven-time NASCAR champion Richard Petty as an element proprietor.

Johnson plans to return in 2023, although solely on a restricted schedule, thus permitting him to fulfil his promise of spending extra time together with his household, which was one of many causes behind his resolution to retire from full-time racing.

His first race in 2023 would be the Daytona 500, scheduled for Feb. 19.

Johnson additionally stated he stays open to alternatives in IndyCar and sports activities automobile racing if the proper one emerges and matches his schedule. He additionally stated racing within the 24 Hours of Le Mans remains to be a risk, maybe behind the wheel of the modified NASCAR Subsequent Gen race automobile that Hendrick Motorsports plans to enter as a particular Storage 56 entry in subsequent yr’s race.

Johnson had already retired from NASCAR after the 2020 season and has since competed primarily in IndyCar with Chip Ganassi Racing, although he hasn’t discovered as a lot success within the new enterprise as his former one, with fifth place being his finest end.

Nonetheless, Johnson’s racing profession has been nothing in need of historic. He holds the report for essentially the most consecutive Cup Sequence championships (5, from 2006 to 2010), and is considered one of solely three drivers with seven Cup Sequence championships, together with Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt. Like Petty and Earnhardt, Johnson gained all seven of his championships racing for a similar workforce—in his case, driving the quantity 48 Chevrolet of Hendrick Motorsports.

Given Johnson’s in depth ties with Hendrick Motorsports, the brand new partnership with Petty GMS looks like an unlikely one. Nonetheless, NASCAR limits the variety of groups a single group can run at 4, and Hendrick is already at that restrict with its groups fielded for Alex Bowman, William Byron, Chase Elliott, and Kyle Larson.

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