NASCAR Legend Jimmie Johnson Focused on Keeping Fears and Nerves Away as IndyCar Debut Nears

Published 04/05/2021, 10:45 AM EDT
KANSAS CITY, KANSAS – JULY 23: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Ally Chevrolet, sit in his car prior to the NASCAR Cup Series Super Start Batteries 400 Presented by O’Reilly Auto Parts at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kansas. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)


Jimmie Johnson is now less than two weeks away from his IndyCar Series debut. The NASCAR legend is taking on a completely new challenge at the age of 45, and that is bound to come with some doubts and fears.

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He recently spoke with former NASCAR Cup Series and IndyCar star, Danica Patrick, about his upcoming debut in the IndyCar Series.

The seven-time Cup champion admitted that he is fearful, just like anyone else would be in his position. “I think we’re all fearful of not being successful or not being competitive,” Johnson said, in response to a question from Patrick.

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Johnson, despite being a rookie in IndyCar this year, will have much of the spotlight on him, given his legacy in NASCAR. He is an experienced race car driver, but there are many unknowns and different challenges in the new competition.

AUSTIN, TEXAS – FEBRUARY 11: NASCAR driver Jimmie Johnson attends NTT IndyCar Series testing at Circuit of The Americas on February 11, 2020 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Jimmie Johnson is not letting the pressure get to him

To help himself navigate that, the Chip Ganassi Racing driver feels it is important for him to not focus on outside opinions. While Johnson is quite active on social media, he is not letting himself get too invested in those numerous opinions in the media.

“It’s really in my head to determine what that is. And not care what others might think,” Johnson said further.

“If I choose to look at social media, there are plenty of opinions there that could bother me. It’s really about being into it with myself, my team, my sponsor on this journey,” he added.

“So much more to what I’m trying,” says the NASCAR legend

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Johnson sees the story of his IndyCar stint as a larger experience that many can identify with. So, he hopes to convey his story in the best way possible; the former Hendrick driver also feels that there is a lot more to his IndyCar experience than meets the eye.

“It’s more rich than ‘I’m here to win races, we had a bad day but we’ll be back next week.’ There’s so much more to what I’m trying to do. I hope I can find that voice and articulate that along this journey,” Johnson expressed.

While Johnson is now away from NASCAR, he has been following the races and sharing his views on some of them. ‘seven-time’, as many fans call him, competes in his IndyCar debut on April 18 at Barber Motorsports Park.

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Aayush Majumdar

948 articles

Aayush Majumdar is a NASCAR content strategist, a Tennis Writer, and a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. He is well-tenured as a tennis and NASCAR writer, with over 900 articles across both sports. After pursuing a Post Graduate program in Sports Management, Aayush explored various roles in Sports Media, including a Sports Reporting role at a leading English daily.

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