Bristol II: Jimmie Johnson

Team Lowe's Racing returns to the world's fastest half-mile; Johnson hopes team's momentum from Michigan carries over to Bristol. BRISTOL, Tenn. (August 19, 2002) - Many fans consider the night race at Bristol Motor Speedway the best race on the...

Team Lowe's Racing returns to the world's fastest half-mile; Johnson hopes team's momentum from Michigan carries over to Bristol.

BRISTOL, Tenn. (August 19, 2002) - Many fans consider the night race at Bristol Motor Speedway the best race on the NASCAR Winston Cup schedule. Team Lowe's Racing enters the weekend coming off a top-10 performance at Michigan International Speedway, which saw the Lowe's team rebound from an accident on Friday afternoon that forced it to use the back-up Lowe's Chevy. Rookie driver Jimmie Johnson started the race in 29th position and was able to drive the Lowe's Monte Carlo to a 7th-place finish, marking the third time this season the team as posted a top-10 finish in a backup Lowe's Chevy.

Team Lowe's Racing is eager to return to Bristol because it was one of the three tracks that the team was forced to use a back-up race car on earlier this season. Johnson had an accident on the first lap of practice forcing the team to a back-up Lowe's Chevy. Just like Michigan, Johnson was able to work his way through the field from the 33rd position and finish the race seventh. Johnson and the team hope that it can avoid using the back-up Lowe's Chevy, but still replicate the results it saw in March at Bristol.

Jimmie Johnson on returning to Bristol Motor Speedway

"Well, it took me two race cars and three days to get the track figured out in the Winston Cup cars, so I'm looking forward to going back. You know, at places you've got to be aggressive, but at the same time it's a very easy track to overdrive. With the Winston Cup car with the extra weight and extra motor, it took me to get into the race finally to understand how I needed to drive the track, so I'm feeling much better about going back, and hopefully we can finish better than what we did there in the Spring."

Johnson's thoughts on how Bristol stacks up to other racetracks

"I love it; it's one of my favorite tracks. It's also one of the tracks where you can take the worse hit in points, so it's also the riskiest track. At Bristol, along with the speedway races, you can't control what happens. When you're looking at the big picture, it scares you on that front, but as far as fun in a race car, it's the number one track."

Johnson on what it takes to win at Bristol

"You've got to have a good handling race car, but more than anything that's one of the tracks where you need luck on your side. There are 42 other bullets flying around out there on the racetrack, so you're going to have some contacts and you're going to have some problems. The luckiest one at the end of the day, with all the other things it normally takes to win, is the winner."

Chad Knaus on the excitement of the night race at Bristol

"The night race at Bristol Motor Speedway, under the lights with the noise and the fans, is the way racing is supposed to be. Bristol is one of my favorite tracks and in many ways offers the fans some of the best racing to see."

Knaus on how Team Lowe's will perform this weekend

"Team Lowe's Racing should be strong at Bristol next weekend. Last March's performance working our way through the field into the top-10 gives us the confidence heading to Bristol that we have the right tools on this team to compete from anywhere on that starting grid. Don't get me wrong, we'd like to start up front, but it's nice to know that we can come from behind if we have to. Also, having raced at Bristol and Richmond and having tested at both tracks this year, we have more experience heading into this race than we did during in March."

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jimmie Johnson , Chad Knaus