Brooklyn, MI – Jimmie Johnson has never missed the postseason in his Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) career. Since NASCAR implemented the original “Chase for the Cup” in 2004, Johnson has qualified for the postseason in all 15 seasons.
After his performance in Sunday’s Consumers Energy 400 at Michigan International Speedway, this streak is in serious jeopardy.
The issues began early for Johnson as he cut a tire and hit the outside wall on Lap 15. Forced to pit multiple times, he was seven laps down by the end of Stage 1.
Ultimately finishing 34th, Johnson’s No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Ally Chevrolet Camaro recorded just three points on the day.
It would have been interesting to see how Johnson’s day would have played out without the early damage.
“Great car. Just really bummed,” Johnson told NBCSN post-race. “That really hurt for sure. Have to rally on. These guys are doing an amazing job. Just keep digging.”
The 16th and final playoff spot is currently occupied by Stewart-Haas Racing’s Clint Bowyer with 559 points. Thanks to his fifth-place showing on Sunday, fellow SHR driver Daniel Suarez sits 17th with 553 points.
That leaves Johnson and his 547 points in 18th-place with just three races remaining in the regular season.
12 points is still easily within striking distance and Johnson is keeping his strategy simple.
“Just fight hard for every point.”
Next up on the schedule is the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on Saturday, August 17.
Green flag is set for shortly after 7:30PM and NBCSN will air the race.
Johnson recorded a top-ten in April’s Food City 500 at BMS.
Another performance like that would go a long way toward keeping one of NASCAR’s most impressive streaks alive.
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