Michigan: Jimmie Johnson preview

Johnson ready to conquer the Irish Hills of Michigan Team Lowe's Racing looking forward to racing at one of its favorite tracks BROOKLYN, Mich. (June 11, 2003) - Team Lowe's Racing comes to the Irish Hills of Michigan and Michigan International...

Johnson ready to conquer the Irish Hills of Michigan
Team Lowe's Racing looking forward to racing at one of its favorite tracks

BROOKLYN, Mich. (June 11, 2003) - Team Lowe's Racing comes to the Irish Hills of Michigan and Michigan International Speedway hoping that it can replicate its strong run in last season's spring race. Team Lowe's is quick to point out that on paper, last season's race result (14th) does not look strong compared to the rest of its finishes last season. However, what the statistics don't show is that Team Lowe's ran strong in this race last year, only to be thwarted following a late-race incident, leaving the No. 48 Lowe's Chevy wounded and limping across the finish line.

Jimmie Johnson on racing at Michigan International Speedway

"Michigan is a great racetrack. Despite what the record books show, Team Lowe's is really strong on it and we're confident that we'll be strong again this weekend. In last season's spring race at MIS, we lead some laps and were in great position to finish in the top-five, if it wasn't for a late race caution that allowed the field to catch up to us. Chad and I elected not to pit and everyone behind us pitted and got fresh tires. When the race went green with just under 10 laps remaining, guys just made some crazy moves that left us in a bad position. I made contact with a couple of race cars on the restart and that took all my momentum away. As a result, we fell to 14th-place and left MIS frustrated, but eager to get back there and have a good run."

Johnson on this week's trips to Alabama and New York

"We've had a very busy week following Pocono, but we had a lot of fun. Monday morning we were up at 4:30 a.m. to catch a flight to Anniston, Ala. to work on the Jimmy Carter Work Project for Habitat For Humanity. I was fortunate enough to meet and work with President Carter and his family. When I first arrived on the building site there were thousands of volunteers working on approximately 30 homes on the site. I helped President Carter frame the house that he was working on and was able to work on the two Lowe's homes that its employee-owners were building. Unless you see the effort and meet the families these homes benefit and see how much this project means to them, you can't imagine how cool this project really is.

"Following the JCWP, we traveled to New York City for a media blitz to announce our special SpongeBob SquarePants paint scheme that Team Lowe's is going to run during the Fourth of July weekend in Daytona. I have to admit, before I found out that we were going to run a SpongeBob paint scheme, I hadn't seen an episode of the Nickelodeon show. But now, I've seen a couple of them and am becoming a fan. I've quickly found out that there are millions of SpongeBob fans around the country and asking me for die-casts, which won't be available until early July unfortunately.

"Overall, I've been fortunate enough that the two special schemes we've run this season are two that have meaning; the first with the Power of Pride campaign benefiting the USO and now SpongeBob with its connection to Habitat for Humanity."

Jimmie Johnson Fast Facts

Johnson ranks seventh in the Winston Cup Series championship standings, 377 points behind leader Matt Kenseth.
Johnson led 25 laps in the fall race at Michigan last season.
Johnson has one top-10 finish out of two Winston Cup races at Michigan International Speedway.
Johnson has two top-five finishes (Daytona - 3rd and Lowe's Motor Speedway - 1st) and six top-10 finishes (Daytona - 3rd, Rockingham - 8th, Bristol - 8th, Texas - 8th, Martinsville - 9th and Lowe's Motor Speedway - 1st).
Johnson led in six out of the 14 races this season (Daytona, Las Vegas, Talladega, Lowe's Motor Speedway, Dover and Pocono)
Johnson has been in the top 10 in NASCAR Winston Cup points for 46 consecutive weeks, the longest current streak in Winston Cup.
Johnson won his first race of the 2003 season on his home track of Lowe's Motor Speedway for the 600.
Johnson won his first pole position of 2003 at Pocono Raceway.
Johnson has four career Winston Cup Victories, tying him for 63rd on the all-time win list.
Johnson won The Winston all-star event at Lowe's Motor Speedway, taking home the largest purse in its 19-year history, $1 million.

Jimmie Johnson at Michigan International Speedway

In the Winston Cup Series, 21st is his average start and 10th is his average finish
Sirius Satellite 400 - 2002: started 14th and finished 14th
Pepsi 400 - 2002 (fall): started 29th and finished 7th
In the Busch Series, 17th was his average qualifying position and 5th was his average finishing position

No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet Fast Facts

Team Lowe's Racing will bring car 4853
This is the same Lowe's Chevy that Johnson used during both Michigan races last season and drove to his first Winston Cup victory (Fontana).

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Matt Kenseth , Jimmie Johnson