Jimmie Johnson Reveals “Very Intentional” Process in Formation of His Star-Studded Rolex 24 Team

Published 12/19/2020, 12:49 PM EST
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)


Many thought seven-time Cup champion Jimmie Johnson would take a break from racing before his IndyCar stint. But participation in the much-renowned Rolex 24 at Daytona event was always on the cards for him.

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The marquee event, set to take place at the Daytona in late January, has a rich history attached to it. Johnson will partner three other drivers at Action Express Racing for the competition.

The lineup consists of Kamui Kobayashi, Simon Pagenaud, and Mike Rockenfeller. But how did this dream team exactly come together? Johnson briefly spoke about the details.

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Methodical in their selection, says Jimmie Johnson

Johnson stated, “You can look down a sheet of paper and pick fast guys and you can think like, yup this guy’s fast, that guy’s fast and come up with a list and pick your four.”

“But I watched them take their time and be very methodical about how we would all fit together. And then of course you have to meet all these other criteria to be on the short list, but long story short, they were very intentional about us four together,” he added.

Jimmie Johnson, Team Owner Rick Hendrick and Crew Chief Chad Knauss pose with the trophy after winning the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway. (Photo by Brian A. Westerholt/Getty Images)

Johnson admits that his participation in the Rolex 24 event was confirmed only in November. Hendrick Motorsports owner Rick Hendrick worked in close collaboration with Jim France and put together this star-studded lineup.

“And I think that’s why we feel the possibility is there and that we do truly have an opportunity to compete for the win,” concluded Johnson on the topic.

Action Express Racing has a mix of talented drivers

Aside from Johnson, renowned for his seven Cup Series titles, Pagenaud is known for his talent in IndyCar racing. Kobayashi is a former F1 driver and also possesses experience in the Rolex 24 event. He has won the crown in the last two editions.

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Rockenfeller holds special expertise in the touring car series, earning many accolades.

DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 08: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Ally Chevrolet, stands in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Cup Series 62nd Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Therefore, it is completely logical to see why this team will start as the favorites. Without a shred of doubt, Johnson will embrace the challenge.

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Bhargav Gopal

927 articles

Hailing from Bengaluru, Bhargav is an F1 and NASCAR author for EssentiallySports. He is a huge fan of Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing. Bhargav also has an MBA in Sports Management from the Symbiosis School of Sports Sciences, Pune.

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