Going for the Gold: Jimmie Johnson Set to Win US NASCAR Title
Victory is in sight for Jimmie Johnson after zooming off and finishing first in the Checker O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 Cup last Sunday. This third consecutive cup at the Phoenix International Raceway serves as Johnson’s golden ticket to the final NASCAR race in Miami next week, where he needs to finish at least 36th to covet his third successive championship.
Although the race was interrupted by two red flags and ten cautions, Johnson dashed toward the chequered flag, ceding the lead to Jamie McMurray on the first lap, but successfully ending up first in 217 of the race’s 313 laps. This ascent to victory lane gives Johnson a 141-point lead in the standings.
“I’m just so, so happy to go out tonight and execute,” exclaimed Johnson after his win, following last week’s pitiable finish in the Texas race.
If Johnson does go for the gold and snatches the NASCAR Cup in next week’s final race, he’ll be immortalised alongside Cale Yarborough as one of the drivers to win three repeated championships in NASCAR’s 60-year history.