Johnson to keep offensive approach

Jimmie Johnson plans to keep an offensive approach for the last three races of the NASCAR Sprint Cup season instead of trying to manage his massive gap in the points

Johnson to keep offensive approach

The reigning champion currently holds almost a one-race gap in the points standings to his Hendrick Motorsports team-mates Mark Martin and Jeff Gordon, and while he will not take any unnecessary risks on the track, he is targeting maximum points for the next two races. He says he will not think of a fourth consecutive title before the season finale.

"If we can go out and outrun the #24 [Gordon] and the #5 [Martin] the next two weeks, we'll let [a fourth title] into our minds then," said Johnson. "Right now I'm just trying to keep the blinders on and stay focused on maximum points. I'm certainly not going to do stupid things on track, take a lot of unneeded risk.

"But I've always been a believer of playing offence. Whenever we have played defence, we've done a miserable job. I'm going to keep playing offence, being aggressive, have the momentum going forward instead of trying to hang on wherever I'm at on track, whatever the points situation may be."

Johnson's current gap in the points makes for the likely scenario of him clinching the title before the final race of the season, something that has never been achieved before under the current Chase format.

"It would be really nice to do that," said Johnson. "I'm not mentally planning for that. I'm still trying to race this weekend and next weekend as if we're behind in points, you need maximum points, because you just never know. I know you guys get tired of hearing this, but anything can happen.

"I feel if we start focusing on an average position where we need to finish, do some things that are different than what the #48 car does, we will set ourselves up for a problem. So if things go right over the next two weeks, right now we're in a position where we would be clinched."

If Johnson leaves the following round of the Chase at Phoenix with more than 196 points over his closest rival, he would be crowned before the season finale. A 162-point gap would allow him to clinch just by starting at Homestead.

shares
comments
Montoya: Johnson has title in the bag

Previous article

Montoya: Johnson has title in the bag

Next article

Martin not sad over blown title run

Martin not sad over blown title run
Load comments
How NASCAR is gearing up for its "biggest change" in 2022 Plus

How NASCAR is gearing up for its "biggest change" in 2022

It’s not just Formula 1 that’s set for upheaval in 2022, as the NASCAR Cup Series adopts its Next Gen cars that will cast any in-built advantages aside and require teams to adopt a totally new way of operating. Far more than just a change of machinery, the new cars amount to a shift in NASCAR's core philosophy

NASCAR
Oct 12, 2021
Why Bubba Wallace’s Talladega win is such a big moment for NASCAR Plus

Why Bubba Wallace’s Talladega win is such a big moment for NASCAR

Bubba Wallace claimed his maiden NASCAR Cup Series at Talladega on Monday to become the first Black victor in the category since Wendell Scott in 1963. Both Wallace and Scott had faced obstacles and racism in their paths to their breakthrough wins, and NASCAR is trying to put it right with its range of diversity programmes

NASCAR
Oct 5, 2021
Why NASCAR's most resilient driver has landed on his feet at 23XI Plus

Why NASCAR's most resilient driver has landed on his feet at 23XI

In a career that has had many ups and downs, Kurt Busch has been written off many times before. But facing career uncertainty after the sale of Chip Ganassi's NASCAR team, the 2004 Cup champion has found a new berth at Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan's 23XI organisation - which underlines his enduring value

NASCAR
Aug 31, 2021
The F1 nearly-man winding back the clock in NASCAR’s European cousin Plus

The F1 nearly-man winding back the clock in NASCAR’s European cousin

A multiple F3000 race winner, Marc Goossens was on the precipice of making Formula 1 in the 1990s - but a lack of budget left him without a path to the promised land. Turning to an illustrious racing career in sportscars, Goossens left the endurance circuit to try his hand at racing stock cars - and now calls the NASCAR Euro Series home

NASCAR
Jul 1, 2021
Why a British prospect is trying to make it in NASCAR Plus

Why a British prospect is trying to make it in NASCAR

There has never been a full-time British driver in the NASCAR Cup. But Alex Sedgwick, who is rising through the stock car ranks, wants that to change and could be a trailblazer for European talents to reach the top echelons of the NASCAR ladder

NASCAR
Feb 28, 2021
How Earnhardt’s death changed American motorsport Plus

How Earnhardt’s death changed American motorsport

It's 20 years since legendary driver Dale Earnhardt Sr died at the Daytona 500, but the legacy of his crash continues today through the pioneering safety work done by NASCAR

NASCAR
Feb 18, 2021
The NASCAR subplots to keep an eye on in 2021 Plus

The NASCAR subplots to keep an eye on in 2021

This weekend's Daytona 500 kickstarts a NASCAR Cup season that promises plenty of intrigue courtesy of new owners and a refreshed calendar. Here's what you need to know ahead of the new season

NASCAR
Feb 12, 2021
How a second-chance NASCAR ace is rebuilding his career Plus

How a second-chance NASCAR ace is rebuilding his career

From a disgraced NASCAR exile, Kyle Larson has been given a shot at redemption by the powerhouse Hendrick Motorsports squad. Replacing seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson is no easy billing, but Larson has every intention of repaying the team's faith

NASCAR
Feb 11, 2021