“Makes Me Feel Alive” – Jimmie Johnson Cherishes Stress of Different Racing Challenges Post NASCAR Career

Published 01/31/2021, 9:10 AM EST
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)


Jimmie Johnson will spend yet another season racing professionally, but this time he will be competing in slightly unfamiliar surroundings. Currently taking part in the Rolex 24 at Daytona that is underway, he will also take on some testing sessions before participating full-time in the IndyCar Series.

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Moving on from the comfort zone that is NASCAR undoubtedly represents its own set of challenges. But Johnson believes that he likes being ‘uncomfortable’ and that trying out new forms of racing makes him feel alive.

Johnson stated, “You know what I’ve realized is, that stress and anxiety and the butterflies, adrenaline, heart racing, questioning if I can do it. That is what I’ve experienced my whole life and it makes me feel alive.”

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I really do like being ‘uncomfortable’, says Jimmie Johnson

“And someday, I won’t have that opportunity, but I’m not ready to walk away from that now. I really do like being uncomfortable and how it makes me feel, and how it holds me accountable.”

Jan 30, 2021; Daytona Beach, FL, USA; IMSA Series driving team of Jimmie Johnson, Kamui Kobayashi, Simon Pagenaud and Mike Rockenfeller (48) during the Rolex 24 at Daytona International Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Shifting to the IndyCar Series means transitioning into open-wheel racing, something Johnson has not frequently done in the last 19 years. Nevertheless, he has committed to a two-year deal and looks forward to making the best use of that opportunity.

“I’ve jumped into the deep end of the pool with weights around my ankles here, for 21 and 22! But it just makes me feel more alive than I have in quite some time,” concluded Johnson in his answer.

Johnson had recently attended a testing session with Chip Ganassi Racing

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Per the last update, Johnson’s team had been leading the DPi class in the all-important Rolex 24 at Daytona. With nine hours down, the seven-time Cup Series champion’s teammate, Kamui Kobayashi, ensured he took the lead for Action Express Racing in the 24 hours endurance event.

Daytona Beach, FL, USA; IMSA drivers Jimmie Johnson and Mike Rockenfeller fist bump before the Rolex 24 at Daytona International Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Recently, Johnson had had the chance of attending a pre-season testing session with his new team. His main focus in the entire session was on getting to grips with the handling and controls of his latest machinery.

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Therefore, his fans will expectedly watch on as to how he performs in the season later on this year. But knowing Johnson’s spirit and endeavor, there is a genuine possibility that he could perform and make his mark in the new league as well.

MORE – From Bubba Wallace to Ryan Newman: Five ‘Dark Horses’ for the 2021 NASCAR Daytona 500

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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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