Seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson is set to run his first IndyCar test with Chip Ganassi Racing on Wednesday, July 8 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.
Seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson has made clear that he wants to compete in an IndyCar road course race once he retires from his full-time role as the driver of the #48 Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports, a job he has had since 2002.
Johnson announced last November that the 2020 season would be his final season as a full-time driver, and he has reiterated his desire to have a shot at IndyCar.
After attending preseason testing at Circuit of the Americas as a guest of Arrow McLaren SP, Johnson was slated to test a car for the team at Barber Motorsports Park on Monday, April 6, one day after IndyCar was scheduled to race there. They even purchased the #48 for his car from Dreyer & Reinbold Racing.
Unfortunately, due to the coronavirus pandemic, that test around the 17-turn, 2.38-mile (3.830-kilometer) natural terrain road course in Birmingham, Alabama was unable to take place. While it was not rescheduled, the 44-year-old El Cajon, California native said that driving an IndyCar is still on his bucket list.
Now he has a chance to get back behind the wheel for a test. Johnson is set to test at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course for Chip Ganassi Racing on Wednesday, July 8 following the first ever NASCAR and IndyCar weekend doubleheader at the venue.
IndyCar is set to race on the 13-turn, 2.439-mile (3.925-kilometer) road course in Speedway, Indiana on Saturday, July 4, along with the Xfinity Series, while the Cup Series is set to race on the four-turn, 2.5-mile (4.023-kilometer) oval on Sunday, July 5.
There had been talks of Johnson potentially making his real IndyCar debut in this weekend’s race since he would be on hand for the Cup Series race anyway, but those talks ultimately did not amount to anything.
Johnson competes against Chip Ganassi Racing in the Cup Series and has done so for many years, but that hasn’t stopped Chip Ganassi from being excited about getting him behind the wheel.
Perhaps most notably, while Arrow McLaren SP run Chevrolet engines and Johnson has been with Chevrolet throughout his entire NASCAR career, Chip Ganassi Racing run Honda engines.
Johnson’s IndyCar “experience” is currently limited to two races of the IndyCar iRacing Challenge, a virtual racing series which took place from March through May during the unexpected hiatus caused by the pandemic.