Still going strong at 41, Jimmie Johnson agrees to 3-year extension

The seven-time champion will continue to race with Hendrick Motorsports in the #48 Chevrolet through the 2020 Cup Series season, the team confirmed today.

Johnson's tenure with Hendrick Motorsports dates back to 2001 and he's spent his entire Cup Series career with one sponsor adorning the hood of his Chevrolets - Lowe's Home Improvement Warehouse.

"My relationship with Lowe's, Hendrick Motorsports and all of my teammates means so much to me", Johnson said in a press release. "We will see how these three years go and certainly from my standpoint I hope to collect another big trophy and then lots of other race trophies along the way and have some fun". "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".

NASCAR's reigning champion, Johnson has been on a tear to start the 2017 season.

"I've said it before and continued to say that when the fire does go out, I will step down", said Johnson, who is preparing for this weekend's race at Michigan International Speedway.

Another factor to consider in Johnson's quest for more wins and titles is that he has been with crew chief Chad Knaus since 2002.

24 HOURS OF LE MANS: After losing to Porsche on the final lap previous year, Toyota is back in force as it chases a first victory at the endurance race that begins today in France. But an interesting twist to Johnson's contract extension was no mention of an extension for Knaus past next season. "Rick (team owner Rick Hendrick) is a businessman, and through his connections in the automotive business and through life, he can offer more than a marketing relationship with a sponsor". "Those crew chief years, I like to call them dog years, I don't have a clear picture on where that will take him, but I will do my best to keep him around as long as I can".

"I've said it before, I want to finish it with him, " Johnson said.

"Eight championships, I would love to stand alone at that", Johnson said.

Mark Martin won five races in 2009 after he turned 50 years old, so it is possible that Johnson, who beat Martin for the title that year, could still win races as he gets older. "I'll keep leaning on him". "It's hard to tell where it's going to go, but my faith is in Rick".

Jimmie Johnson isn't going anywhere, and he isn't hanging up his helmet just yet. I think you will, but I guess again, to answer your question, I think directionally it is getting shorter.

  • Zachary Reyes