Jimmie Johnson is in the midst of his longest winless drought of his Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series career. Despite having 83 career Cup Series wins, he hasn’t made a trip to victory lane in well over a year. The last victory for his No. 48 Chevrolet was at Dover in June of 2017, June 4 to be exact. That’s 46 races ago.
But, that could end in Saturday’s Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race (7:30 p.m. ET/NBCSN/PRN/SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). Yes, I think this could be Johnson’s race to win.
First off, the “Big 3” are vulnerable are the Bristol (Tenn) Motor Speedway. Martin Truex Jr. has eight finishes of 20th or worse in his last 10 races on the .533-mile oval and hasn’t scored a top 10 on the track since 2012. Kevin Harvick has been stronger since 2015 at Bristol but prior to that, his last top five was in 2008. Kyle Busch is among the best ever at Bristol, but he also has had some recent bad luck too. He’s had five finishes of 29th or worst in his last eight Bristol starts.
So, while they could very well still win on Saturday night, there’s a good chance that they won’t either.
He hasn’t scored a top five finish since Charlotte on May 27 but he’s been at his best on short tracks. His last top five before that was in the spring race at Bristol back in April. Two of his three wins last year were on short tracks and both were on concrete too including the spring race at Bristol.
Even further, Johnson has seven top 11 finishes over his last eight Bristol starts including five of which in the top four.
He’s one to watch this weekend.