Rookie of the Year, who will win?

Rookie of the Year, who will win?

As Ryan Newman and Jimmie Johnson prepare for their final four races, they continue to battle nose to nose for the 2002 Raybestos Rookie of the Year title, leaving us to wonder, who will win? Jimmie Johnson. Photo by Greg...

As Ryan Newman and Jimmie Johnson prepare for their final four races, they continue to battle nose to nose for the 2002 Raybestos Rookie of the Year title, leaving us to wonder, who will win?

Jimmie Johnson.
Photo by Greg Gage.
Johnson, the Hendrick Motorsports driver, enters Atlanta with a little pride over Newman. Johnson ran sixth in his Monte Carlo last weekend at Martinsville, tying him with Newman with a total of 11 top-10s on the year.

Newman, on the other hand, began the weekend on a high note after winning the pole in his Penske Ford Taurus. Unfortunate for Newman, things went sour and he ended the race 15th, one lap down to the leader. Johnson gained a handful of points on Newman and is now only 20 points behind for the rookie title.

Ryan Newman.
Photo by Greg Gage.
The amazing thing, not only are these two duking it out for top rookie honors, they are in a dead heat for the Winston Cup championship. Johnson currently sits second with two wins on the year, while Newman is fifth with one win.

Entering the race at Atlanta this weekend, Johnson is looking for a repeat of his performance while Newman is looking for a slight step up. In the spring, Johnson and his #48 team scored a third place finish. Newman also ran well and finished 10th.

Following the race at Atlanta, the talented rookie class will pack up and head to Rockingham. In the second race of the season, Newman was the highest finishing rookie with his 14th place run.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Ryan Newman , Jimmie Johnson
Teams Hendrick Motorsports