Johnson Chase Dover History, NASCAR Legends
Another record is in Jimmie Johnson’s sights.
Last spring’s Dover victory was Johnson’s seventh at the track, matching NASCAR Hall of Fame members Bobby Allison and Richard Petty atop the track’s all-time win list. The current NASCAR Sprint Cup points leader has won the track’s spring race three times and swept both Dover races in 2009.
How good is Johnson at “The Monster Mile?”
Consider this: 50% of his starts (11 for 22) in the top five; and 72.7% (16 for 22) in the top10. Since collection of Loop Data statistics in 2005, Johnson has led 1,923 laps – 30% of all laps run, nearly three times greater than the next best leader, Kyle Busch. He’s led laps in 11 consecutive Dover starts, eight times in double figures.
Johnson’s Dover Driver Rating is a gaudy 120.6. His average finish is 8.6.
Statistics, however, don’t guarantee either victory or high finish. Johnson is similarly dominant at Charlotte Motor Speedway, where an accident left the five-time champion 22nd in last weekend’s Coca-Cola 600. Danger lurks around each of Dover’s 24-degree-banked turns – and on its nine-degree-banked straightaways as well.
Johnson continues to lead 2007 Dover winner Carl Edwards in standings but lost more than quarter of his cushion – 44 points to 32 – at Charlotte. Two-time Dover winner Matt Kenseth is third.
Hendrick Motorsports is Dover’s all-time winning organization with 14 victories.