JOHNSON GETS KNAUS PERFECT WEEKEND

With his victory at Lowe's Motor Speedway on Saturday night, Jimmie Johnson has won three of the first five Chase races and is pulling away from the field in his quest for a fourth straight Sprint Cup title. Johnson lost the lead to teammate Jeff Gordon following a restart with 15 laps to go, but took the lead back for good two laps later. Johnson and crew chief Chad Knaus pulled off a perfect weekend, running the fastest in every practice, winning the pole and the race. The perfect weekend has ...

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UPDATED CHAMPIONSHIP PROBABILITY TABLE: JOHNSON PULLING AWAY

The championship probability table underwent a major shakeup this week thanks to Jimmie Johnson’s win in Fontana. (For a refresher on how probability is determined, go here.) 1) Johnson was the big winner in every department. He won the race, took the points lead and gained 18 percentage points here, moving from a 24 percent chance of winning the title to 42 percent. That almost doubles his next competitor. 2) Fortunately for Mark Martin, his fourth-place finish kept him within striking ...

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JOHNSON PASSES MARTIN FOR CHASE LEAD

Boring driver. Boring track. Boring race. Exciting Chase. Sorry for the lack of verbs. But verbs are too active a word choice to describe what transpired at the Pepsi 500 at Auto Club Speedway on Sunday. The good news is that, with his victory, Jimmie Johnson passed Mark Martin for the lead in what is suddenly a very exciting playoff. Johnson leads Martin (-12), Juan Pablo Montoya (-58), Tony Stewart (-84), Jeff Gordon (-105), Kurt Busch (-121) and the rest of the field (-itdoesn'tmatter) with s ...

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JIMMIE JOHNSON ON ‘TONIGHT SHOW’

Jimmie Johnson - that was funny! (I have always wondered what that sentence would look like. There it is. Weird.) While in Southern California for the Pepsi 500, Johnson made an appearance Thursday on "The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien." Johnson and O'Brien had a good give and take, especially regarding O'Brien's recent on-set head injury. The highlight, though, was the golf cart race between Johnson and O'Brien. No, Johnson did not attempt to surf his cart. If he had, we would all b ...

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CHAMPIONSHIP PROBABILITY TABLE: JOHNSON PASSES STEWART AND MARTIN

 With the Dover race in the record books, just eight races remain until the 2009 Sprint Cup champion is crowned. Let’s take a look at the updated championship probability table, which includes some interesting side notes. 1) The big winner at Dover was Jimmie Johnson, who nearly doubled his chance of winning the Chase. 2) Mark Martin's second-place finish kept him in second place on this table, but his percentage moved up a good chunk, from 18 to 23. 3) Tony Stewart's ni ...

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JOHNSON WINS AAA 400

Jimmie Johnson's march to an unprecedented fourth straight Sprint Cup title continued on Sunday in Dover with his win over teammate Mark Martin in the second race of the Chase. With the exception of the horrific Joey Logano crash, the almost four-hour long AAA 400 lacked for serious drama as Johnson blew the field away. Johnson is now within 10 points of Chase leader Martin. Click here for the updated standings.Johnson wins Chase race at Dover (AP) ...

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JIMMIE JOHNSON HAS MOST POINTS AT CHASE TRACKS THIS SEASON

The Sprint Cup Series already has visited eight of the 10 tracks remaining on the schedule. Want to know who will be among the favorites to win the Chase? An interesting exercise would be to see who scored the most points at those eight tracks the first time around. Note: I am only considering the 12 drivers who made the Chase.  In fact, Matt Kenseth and David Reutimann would be high on this list and Kyle Busch would be ahead of Juan Pablo Montoya - had they made the Chase. Not surprisi ...

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MONTOYA GETS SPEEDING PENALTY, JOHNSON WINS ALLSTATE 400

Jimmie Johnson won the Allstate 400 at The Brickyard on Sunday. The win was the third of what is looking like another championship season for the three-time defending Sprint Cup champ. He has moved past Jeff Gordon to take second place in the points standings behind Tony Stewart. Johnson capitalized on Juan Pablo Montoya's late-race pit road speeding penalty to take the win. Montoya, in the video below, believes he was "screwed" by NASCAR. "I swear on my children and my wife that ...

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RIVALRY? WHAT RIVALRY?

Kurt Busch ended one of the Sprint Cup's few interesting rivalries when he vowed to patch things up with No. 2 car wrecking ball Jimmie Johnson. Thank you, Kurt, for eliminating one of the more compelling reasons to watch Sunday's race. Busch planned to speak with Johnson today and "move on." Busch and Johnson tangled at Sonoma and Chicago, with Busch losing track position - and respect for Johnson - in both exchanges. After the Chicago race Busch said, "I'm starting to lose fa ...

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NASCAR AT THE ESPYS

The ESPYs air tonight at 9 ET on ESPN. Not to ruin your idea of how television works, but the show was taped on Wednesday. (I know your pain. The same thing happened to me when I took a tour of the CNN building in Atlanta and found out they tape Headline News. It was the day I lost my innocence.) Thanks to the Internet we already know, for example, that Jimmie Johnson won Best Driver for the second straight year and that – is there no justice? – Paul Menard was not even nominated. Th ...

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