Jimmie Johnson isn’t going anywhere, and he isn’t hanging up his helmet just yet.
The seven-time champion is returning to Hendrick Motorsports, his home since 2001, signing a three-year extension through 2020. Longtime primary sponsor Lowe’s will also be returning to the No. 48 team, sponsoring each of the 38 races in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series through 2018.
“My relationship with Lowe’s, Hendrick Motorsports and all of my teammates means so much to me,” Johnson said in a press release. “I remember hoping to just win one race. Winning seven championships and 83 races was inconceivable, and now we have the opportunity to do even more together.
“It says a lot to have one sponsor, one crew chief and one team for so long. I couldn’t be more proud to represent everyone at Lowe’s and Hendrick Motorsports, and I continue to be as grateful for the opportunity as I was when we started.”
Johnson is tied for sixth on NASCAR’s all-time wins list with Cale Yarborough, earning 83 trophies in NASCAR’s premier division.
“Jimmie is one of the best to ever drive,” team owner Rick Hendrick said in the release. “We’re so fortunate to have him as part of our organization, and I feel even luckier to call him a friend. He’s a great champion, a terrific advocate for Lowe’s and a true ambassador for NASCAR. There’s no better person, and he’s as good in the racecar today as he’s ever been.”
Lowe’s is one of a handful of full-time primary sponsors in the Cup Series. The partnership between the three sides is the longest driver-sponsor-team one in the sport’s top division.
Crew chief Chad Knaus has another year on his deal, but did not announce an extension in alliance with the other players of the deal on Friday.
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Brian has more work ahead of him, til at least 2020, provided he’s still around. If he’s not, it’s Johnson’s last contract.
As an afterthought, I’ve believed that drivers shouldn’t get a salary but get paid according to how much the car brings in in earnings. The drivers, even Johnson, might “race” a little differently if they realize the car ahead is taking money from their pockets that their wives have already spent.
LOL, I am thinking of one wife with a credit card itch! Pay attention to me, gotta go get me a new ball gown for PIT ROAD! HEHEHEHEHEE. But it is all about love….hehehehhehe.