Chicagoland: Jimmie Johnson preview

Chicagoland Speedway is the next stop on the Sprint Cup circuit for Team Lowe's Racing and driver Jimmie Johnson. Johnson has competed at the 1.5-mile track six times, finishing in the top-six at each event until last season when a flat tire ...

Chicagoland Speedway is the next stop on the Sprint Cup circuit for Team Lowe's Racing and driver Jimmie Johnson.

Johnson has competed at the 1.5-mile track six times, finishing in the top-six at each event until last season when a flat tire relegated him to a 37th-place result. He has also started from the top eight in every event since 2003.

Despite his strong record there, Chicagoland Speedway is one of only seven tracks in which Johnson hasn't been to Victory Lane.

CHAD KNAUS ON GOING TO CHICAGO: "Chicago is a fun track to go to. We've had a lot of success there in the past and some really good finishes, we just haven't gotten the win yet. We had a really good car there last year but cut a tire and wrecked late in the race. With the race being at night this year for the first time things will be a little different but hopefully we can get the win and check Chicago off the list."

JIMMIE JOHNSON ON WHAT FUELED HIM TO GO INTO CHARITY WORK WHEN HE FIRST STARTED THE JIMMIE JOHNSON FOUNDATION?: "Growing up, there were a few team members and teammates that I had that had been through different situations that brought my eye to the charitable world. One thing that I think really helped me at a young age was in the Mickey Thompson Stadium Racing Series, they would take a couple of drivers from each division and we'd go in a daily early and go to a local children's hospital. And that experience at a young age, kids didn't have a clue who I was, but they knew who Ivan Stewart was and Walker Evans and these top-named guys who were there, but to watch these kids smile and to see the impact we could make even just walking down the hallways, opened my eyes to it.

"I've supported a lot of different charities growing up. What really brought it all together was Kyle and Patti (Petty) sitting Chani and I down and talking to us about it. They said hey, you guys are doing a great job but it if you want to do more, this is how you do it. When they kind of laid it out for us, it made a lot of sense. We hit the ground running. It's been extremely rewarding. At the same time, we're in a high profile situation where you have to run a first class operation and we spend a lot of time with the foundation. We really do. It is extremely rewarding. But it certainly takes a lot of hours to do it and you've got to be committed to running a foundation. That's something that we're willing to step up to the challenge and have done a good job with that. But you can't go wrong. Even it it's at a local level or supporting something that you're close to, to a national level and things that we're trying to do. It all makes a difference."

Johnson will pilot chassis number 502 in Saturday night's Sprint Cup event. He finished sixth in that chassis at Michigan International Speedway last month. The backup chassis, No. 480, was driven to a fourth-place result in May's Sprint Cup Challenge.

-credit: hm

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Jimmie Johnson