“I’ll Never be the King” – Humble Jimmie Johnson Opens Up on GOAT Debate With Dale Earnhardt & Richard Petty

Published 12/03/2021, 11:08 AM EST
FONTANA, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 28: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Ally Chevrolet, speaks ahead of practice at Auto Club Speedway on February 28, 2020 in Fontana, California. (Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images)

They say that success changes people. And it is true. Success can either take a winner’s ego go through the roof or keep them with their feet on the ground. Neither takes anything away from their achievements, but speaks volumes about their personality. With NASCAR, and specifically, the argument of who the greatest in NASCAR is, there are a few names that come up – Richard Petty, Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson.

But recently Johnson, who has the record most and as many titles as Petty and Earnhardt, suggested that he’s ‘just a guy’ and not the GOAT.

Johnson quoted Earnhardt’s speech from 1994 when he won his record-equalling seventh title. The Intimidator had said, “I might’ve won as many championships as Richard Petty, but he’ll always be ‘The King’.”

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Johnson claims he fully agrees with what Earnhardt said about Petty.

But as for him and his name alongside The King and The Intimidator, Johnson had this to say – “I might’ve won as many championships as Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt, but I will never be ‘The King’ or ‘The Intimidator’.”

“I’m just a guy from California who always wanted to race.”  

Jimmie Johnson is certainly one of the very best

In his career that spanned almost two decades, Johnson firmly put his name up there among the very best.

The former Hendrick driver won 83 races that took him to sixth on the all-time list. He won five championships in a row between 2006 and 2011. Johnson holds the record for most wins in Dover, Martinsville, Texas and Charlotte. He is also the driver with the most All-Star Race wins with four victories.

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And of course, he is alongside Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt with the most Cup Series titles, an astounding seven trophies.

HOMESTEAD, FL – NOVEMBER 20: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s Chevrolet, poses for a portrait after winning the 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images)

In almost all sports, there are athletes who go on rambling about how great they are. But greatness doesn’t come from self-proclamations; rather, it’s an honor bestowed upon you by the world.

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And whether he likes it or not, whether he admits it or not, Jimmie Johnson will certainly be counted as one of the greatest, if not the ultimate GOAT.

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Shaharyar

1039 articles

Shaharyar is a Formula 1 & NASCAR writer at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Journalism from Amity University, he has been a passionate follower of motorsports for better part of the decade. A Max Verstappen and Ferrari supporter, he dreams of a pairing of the two in future.

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