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Jimmie Johnson Realizing Childhood Dream at Indianapolis | IndyCar

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When the green flag waves on May 29, Jimmie Johnson will become just the 19th driver in motorsports history to compete in the Indianapolis 500 and the Brickyard 400. He joins a dynamic list of talented individuals that have driven in both events at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Only five of the current 18 drivers have ever won the Indy 500. Those legendary names include Juan Montoya, Sam Hornish Jr, Jacques Villeneuve, and of course AJ Foyt. The only driver on that list that has won the Brickyard 400 is Tony Stewart.

Johnson won the Brickyard 400 four times during his career, second only to Jeff Gordon’s five victories. Now as a member of Chip Ganassi Racing, the 46-year old has an opportunity to make even more history next Sunday. Should Johnson win the 106th running, he would become the only person in history to have both Indy 500 and Brickyard 400 victories on his resume.

Montoya came close to accomplishing the feat back in 2007 in his first Brickyard start. Driving for Ganassi, Montoya started and finished in 2nd place. Though he started from pole in the 2010 race, he only had one more top-ten finish (9th) in his other seven starts.

When Johnson made his first IndyCar start on an oval in March at Texas, not many people knew what to expect. Jimmie himself admitted as such, but he performed exceptionally well, finishing 6th after starting back in 18th. This shouldn’t come as a major surprise, as 82 of his 83 NASCAR Cup victories came on oval tracks.

A competitive Johnson in his first Indianapolis 500 will add another exciting element to the race. He showed speed during the Open Test in April, posting nice tow laps and 10-lap average speeds. He has never put any expectations on himself or the team, but he knows he will have a legitimate shot.

When asked by reporters if he could win the 500 this year, Johnson did not hesitate. “Why not? Let’s dream big. The 500 is a special race. We’ve seen favorites win. We’ve seen the race won by strategy,…

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