Feb 24, 2013; Daytona Beach, FL, USA; NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Jimmie Johnson poses with the Harley J. Earl Trophy after winning the 2013 Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Liles-USA TODAY Sports

Jimmie Johnson is Bad Business for NASCAR


How is that for a controversial headline for a controversial article? As I watched the race on Sunday, I began to strongly feel this way watching Johnson take the lead. I was reading tweets and most of them were complaints. As soon as I decided to write on this topic, I prepared myself for the hate and comments I will face for publishing this. However, I want to make it clear, that I have nothing but respect for Jimmie Johnson for what he has done and accomplished in his career. He deserves nothing but respect for his career and those accomplishments.

So what do I mean by Jimmie Johnson is bad business for NASCAR? Well, the fact that our sport has someone who can dominate at any track the circuit goes to and has won five consecutive championships and is always ready for his sixth one…is great. We have the next best ambassador for our sport and the next Richard Petty. Johnson is the modern era Richard Petty. You can’t argue that!

However, at the slightest mention of his name, Chad Knaus or his team…and the growls of the entire fan base of NASCAR with the exception his own fans can be heard around the world. You are either a Jimmie Johnson fan, or you do not like him. It’s a pretty simple and basic formula.

More people dislike Johnson then they like him. Why? Again, it’s another easy to understand formula. He and Chad Knaus win. They dominate. Of course you can’t leave out the fact that a good majority of NASCAR fans are proud to be fans of Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Once Johnson grabs the lead and dominates in a race, there is a seventy-five percent chance in my opinion that you can forget anyone else having a shot to win the race.

Johnson and Knaus just know each other well and communicate well. That is their recipe for their success. Week in and week out they show up at each track to win. They are fast. They lead laps. They dominate. They have good pit stops. They win.

However, if Johnson continues to dominate like he has been since 2005, fans are going to grow tired of the sport and begin to lose interest in it. Seeing one driver and his team “run” the show each week and year is very boring, especially if you’re not a fan of that driver.

Yes, I know that Tony Stewart and Brad Keselowski both have won the Sprint Cup Championship in the past two seasons since Johnson’s last crown. Still, he hasn’t been far behind them in points at the end of the season and was just points away from his sixth title. Not to mention during the season he always finds himself up front and leading laps.

There really is nothing NASCAR can do. It’s up to competitor teams to get their equipment as good as the No. 48 team’s is and begin to compete with him. Until then, we’re going to be seeing a lot of Jimmie Johnson whether you like him or not.

I’m not writing to bash Johnson at all. Just expressing an opinion.

Tags: Featured Jimmie Johnson NASCAR Popular Sprint Cup Series

  • Nick DeGroot

    I’m not a fan of Jimmie Johnson but I hate it when people attack him on Twitter just because he is better than almost everyone in the field. I feel bad for him because he doesn’t get near the respect he deserves and people seem to forget that he isn’t some rich boy that bought his ride. His mother was a school bus driver and his dad was a construction worker.

    Fans hate on him for winning too much…well, instead of wasting their time complaining about JJ, they should spend it complaining about their driver not being fast enough to beat him. And this is coming from someone that isn’t his fan but I highly respect him for what he’s done. My favorites are actually Bowyer, B. Labonte and Jr. I do like your article btw, you did a nice job walking the fine line between hating on 5-time and praising him for what he has done.

    • Bryant Douglass

      Thanks bud! I have a feeling there will be some hate before the day is over though! Haha!

  • http://twitter.com/SportzFan54 Tyler Katt

    Brian France changing the championship format made him a 5 time champion, and personally I’m tired of the hype because a guy does good at some of his best tracks at the end of the year

    • Nick DeGroot

      I personally believe JJ would of dominated even more without the chase. They won 5 straight titles because they were good when it counted, they saved the best they had for the chase. With no chase, they would of unleashed the best stuff they had from R1 to R36.

      Also, you can’t really look and say this person would of won if there was no chase because the strategy teams play during races is completely different depending on their situation. The outcome of a lot of those races would of been different had there been no chase.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jed.clampett.9235 Jed Clampett

    You can hate him but you can’t beat him.
    Very strange run Jimmy is on but what can anyone do about it but get out there and beat him on the race track.
    Beat Jimmy on the track or stop the whining.

  • Rob

    It’s partially Jimmie but more that NASCAR magically erases any fine or point penalty they get. So how many times do they get to slide through inspection.? Not Hendrick teams but how many engines, frames etc.do they supply. Think they listen when he speaks? Is Jimmie better than Gordon, kayne and other Hendrick owned including Stewart’s teams on a weekly basis? If Rick says he is then he is. Not even close to Petty. Back then you had different cars a team built. Now they are almost the same aside from when NASCAR looks the other way. We just want things where it’s obviously NOT fixed. In an era of supposed parity nobody is good enough to dominate. If they do there isn’t parity, break up the team. Just because they ahem …aren’t caught cheating doesn’t mean they aren’t.

  • Rob

    Example, remember how severe NASCAR punished both Penske teams for using unapproved parts? The penalties were huge,same with Gibbs. The 48 was definitely trying to cheat by using low drag C pillars. Initially @they were severely penalized until Rick Hendrick appealed it to his buddy.Suddenly no points were lost and only a 25k fine. As I said previous, it’s not all Jimmie, he’s just the face of the team. How can others compete? They can’t until the corruption is addressed which is what I believe most fans are really angry about. If corruption stays changing drivers or crew chiefs won’t solve anything ….sincerely, phantom caution!