Jimmie Johnson admitted that if the right opportunity arises, he could find himself back competing in the NASCAR Cup Series.
Seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson has been done competing full-time in the Cup Series since he made his final start behind the wheel of the #48 Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports at Phoenix Raceway last November, retiring after 19 seasons with 83 race wins.
But even when he announced that he would retire after the 2020 season back in November 2019, the 45-year-old El Cajon, California native left the door open to compete in more races.
He has maintained his word on that, having made the move from the Cup Series to IndyCar in a part-time role as Chip Ganassi Racing’s road and street course driver of the #48 Honda.
He plans to test on an oval in preparation for potential future oval races as well, though he is currently in the first year of a two-year deal as only the road and street course driver.
Tony Kanaan is the driver of the #48 Honda in the oval races, so any oval starts for Johnson in 2022 would have to be made in a fifth car — otherwise, he would have to wait until 2023.
Additionally, he has competed part-time for Action Express Racing in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. One thing he hasn’t done yet? Return to NASCAR. But that has never been off the table, as he has said before, and that is another claim he is sticking by.
In fact, he recently told Fox Sports’ Bob Pockrass that if a great opportunity presents itself, he would probably say yes.
“I feel like I’m very near the cap of races that I would want to run in a year. I’m at 17, and 17 to 20 is that number I’ve been aiming for. But if a great opportunity came along, I would definitely look hard at it — and probably do it.”
Here’s a video:
Johnson is set to make his eighth career IndyCar start in next weekend’s inaugural Big Machine Music City Grand Prix on the streets of Nashville, Tennessee. This race is set to be broadcast live on NBC Sports Network beginning at 5:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, August 8.