Jimmie Johnson Wins Record Tying 7th Career Sprint Cup Championship With Ford EcoBoost 400 Victory

HOMESTEAD, Fla – History was made on Sunday night at the Homestead-Miami Speedway, as Jimmie Johnson tied Dale Earnhardt and Richard Petty for the most career titles with his seventh career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship. Johnson, had to overcome a lot this season as he nearly lost his crew chief midway through the year as team owner Rick Hendrick told reporters on Friday afternoon that in the midst of their summer slump, that he contemplated splitting Johnson and Chad Knaus up.

But, they over came that and had six top 10’s in the Chase, including three victories en route to his seventh areer title and first to accomplish that feat since Earnhardt in 1994.

Johnson, also had to endure a rough start as he was moved to the back of the field to start the Ford EcoBoost 400 giving up a 14th place starting spot and having to roll off 40th due to an “unapproved adjustment.” He would quickly move up the field as he was in 11th by time the first caution flag flew on Lap 26.

Johnson, would steadily move up until he found the top five near Lap 50. He would stay around the top 10 for the rest of the day and would honestly look out of it if not for a late race caution with 15 laps-to-go.

Carl Edwards got by his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch for second in the race, first in the championship with 25 to go, and he was pulling away from the cars behind him. Johnson, was sixth at the time and well over five seconds behind Edwards.

But, that caution changed everything.

The leaders would pit as Johnson would restart fifth. On that restart with 10 to go, Edwards moved down to block Joey Logano and the two made contact sending Edwards into the inside wall on the front stretch and ending his Chase hopes with a 34th place finish.

At that time, Johnson skated by both and would restart fourth, one spot behind Kyle Busch in the championship. Logano, would pit for new tires on that caution and restart eighth.

When we went back to green with six to go, Johnson powered by Busch while Logano moved from eighth to third. But, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. would spin off of Turn 2 causing the seventh and final caution flag of the night. Busch, would pit from fifth for new tires and restart 13th during that caution while Johnson and Logano would restart second and third respectively.

On the final restart, Johnson would pass Kyle Larson for the lead exiting Turn 2 and never look back en route to his 80th career Sprint Cup Series victory and series leading fifth of the season. It also powered him to his seventh title, his first since 2013.

The win also was Johnson’s first at Homestead as there’s only three tracks left he’s yet to win at – Kentucky, Watkins Glen and Chicagoland.

Larson, would come home second despite leading a race-high 132 of the 268 laps tonight. The Chip Ganassi Racing driver would lead all but 15 of the final 144 laps and cruise to his second straight top three finish and fourth top six in the final seven races of the year.

Kevin Harvick would come home third for his fifth top seven in the last six races.

Logano, would settle for fourth in his No. 22 Ford to be second in the final standings. The fourth place effort was his five top five in the last six races and 13th top 10 over the final 15 starts of the season.

Jamie McMurray would give Ganassi two cars in the top five as he brought his No. 1 Chevrolet home fifth.

Kyle Busch would charge to finish sixth.

Ford EcoBoost 400 Results:

  1. 48 Johnson
  2. 42 Larson
  3.  4 Harvick
  4. 22 Logano
  5.  1 McMurray
  6. 18 KyBusch
  7. 20 Kenseth
  8. 47 Allmendinger
  9. 11 Hamlin
  10. 59 McDowell
  11. 24 Elliott R
  12.  3 Dillon
  13. 41 KuBusch
  14. 27 Menard
  15. 44 Scott R
  16. 88 Bowman
  17. 16 Biffle -1
  18. 13 Mears -1
  19. 10 Patrick -2
  20.  6 Bayne -2
  21. 38 Cassill -2
  22. 14 Stewart -2
  23. 15 Bowyer -2
  24. 34 Buescher R -2
  25. 31 Newman -4
  26. 21 Blaney R -4
  27. 49 DiBenedetto -4
  28. 46 Annett -4
  29. 23 Ragan -4
  30. 17 Stenhouse Jr. -6
  31. 83 Earnhardt R -7
  32. 55 Sorenson -9
  33.  95 T. Dillon -10
  34. 19 Edwards OUT
  35.  2 Keselowski OUT
  36. 78 Truex Jr. OUT
  37.  5 Kahne OUT
  38.  7 Smith OUT
  39. 32 Lupton OUT
  40. 43 Almirola OUT

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