#TBT: Happy birthday, Jimmie Johnson

Published On September 17, 2015 » 1384 Views» By John Schwarb » #TBT, Blogs, Brickyard 400, Cup Series, IMS, IMS History

For more strolls down Memory Lane, check out our #TBT archive.

Blog-JJohnson-600

We’re not saying Jimmie Johnson is old, but turns 40 today. And if there’s a Winston Cup Series patch on your firesuit …

NASCAR’s Chase for the Sprint Cup begins this weekend at Chicagoland Speedway. Who’s your pick to win it all?

Sitting atop the standings going into the 10-race playoff is Jimmie Johnson, continuing his quest for a seventh Cup title. Can the old man get it done this year? We kid … though Johnson turned 40 today.

We dug into the IMS photo vault for this #TBT photo from 2003 of a 27-year-old Johnson and longtime crew chief Chad Knaus, strategizing before the Brickyard 400. In 2003, the California native was a multiple-race winner but had not yet become championship caliber. The first title would arrive in 2006, then the deluge began with four more through 2010 and one more in 2013.

At the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Johnson wasn’t anything special until that first title year of 2006, when he won his first of four Brickyard 400s. His Indy debut in 2002 was a respectable ninth, but three subsequent starts were 18th, 36th and 38th.

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About The Author

John Schwarb

I joined the Indianapolis Motor Speedway communications team in July 2014 and love sharing stories from the World Capital of Racing, particularly its rich history. Most of my professional career has been in racing or golf, so if I'm not in the IMS media center, the office at 16th and Georgetown or milling around Gasoline Alley, maybe I'll be standing over a birdie putt at Brickyard Crossing. Follow us at @IMS or drop me a line at @JohnSchwarb and come back to the blog often for more stories.
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