Tony Kanaan Reacts to Being Named the Chip Ganassi ‘Teammate’ for Jimmie Johnson at Indy 500

Published 01/18/2022, 2:00 AM EST
DAYTONA, FL – FEBRUARY 15: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Hendrick Motorsports Ally Chevrolet Camaro, during final practice for the Daytona 500 on February 15, 2020 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fl. (Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

For the 2022 IndyCar season, Jimmie Johnson is competing on a full-time basis. In other words, the 7-time NASCAR Cup Series champion has a shot at racing in the iconic Indianapolis 500. It is also worth mentioning that Brazilian driver Tony Kanaan will team up with the NASCAR veteran. Needless to say, he seems to be pretty excited to be a “teammate” of Jimmie Johnson.

He said, “It was never a doubt we were finally going to race together. Pretty excited about that.”

This is pretty much a reference to the 2021 season, where he and Johnson drove the same car. In that scenario, Johnson competed on road course events, while Kanaan tackled the ovals, including the Indy 500.

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Can Jimmie Johnson win the Indy 500?

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Admittedly, Johnson definitely has the capability to win. In addition to that, he has an excellent machine under him, especially since his teammate Alex Palou is a defending champion. However, Jimmie Johnson will be acutely aware that the road to Victory Lane is riddled with obstacles. Chief among them are his own teammates, Palou, Scott Dixon, and Marcus Ericsson.

AVONDALE, ARIZONA – NOVEMBER 08: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Ally Chevrolet, walks on stage during pre-race ceremonies prior to the NASCAR Cup Series Season Finale 500 at Phoenix Raceway on November 08, 2020 in Avondale, Arizona. Jimmie Johnson is scheduled to retire from full-time NASCAR racing after 2020. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Other rivals are also in play, and they will be keen to win the legendary Indy 500. Apart from that, there is also the prospect of fighting for an IndyCar title. In all honesty, Jimmie Johnson has not been involved in a title fight in a while. So he will be relishing the opportunity to gun for one this time around.

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The former Hendrick Motorsports driver does have a bit of experience now, especially because of last year. However, the ovals could be new territory for him. So, he could potentially try to rely on his NASCAR experience, and try to translate that onto an IndyCar machine. One thing is for sure, the 2022 Indianapolis 500 will be an exciting prospect for the drivers and the fans.

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Dhruv George

12926 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Motorsports author for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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