Jimmie Johnson picked up his record eighth Dover victory last fall.It was just a matter of time before Jimmie Johnson won in 2014. He had won in all 12 of his previous full Sprint Cup Series seasons, ranked second in laps led on the season and had led more than 20 laps in five of the first 11 races of the season.
The win was Johnson’s seventh career victory at Charlotte, breaking a tie with Hall of Famers Darrell Waltrip and Bobby Allison for the most all-time at a track that dates back to 1960. In fact, Johnson needed fewer starts to reach seven wins than either Waltrip or Allison needed for their sixth.
Now that Johnson has won once, expect the floodgates to be opened. Because, frightening as it might seem, even though Johnson is the all-time wins leader at Charlotte, he’s even better at the site of this week’s race - Dover.
Johnson is an eight-time winner at the Monster Mile, picking up the eighth victory in last fall’s race there, and subsequently breaking a tie with Allison and Richard Petty for the most career wins there.
Most Laps Led at Dover
NSCS Races From 2009-13
Johnson hasn’t just been victorious at Dover, he’s been dominant there. In nine of the last 10 races there, he’s led over 140 laps, including leading 386 of the 800 laps run there last year.
Overall, in the last 10 races at Dover, Johnson’s led 2,067 laps, or more than 1,300 more than any other driver. And for his career, he's led 2,704 laps at Dover, less than 100 away from passing Allison for the track record.
Johnson has been the fastest driver on 797 laps over the last five seasons at Dover, 3.4 times as many as any other driver. His average running position in those 10 races is third. Only one other driver, Kyle Busch, even averages a spot in the top 10.
Best Average Driver Rating
At a Single Track Since 2009
Johnson’s average driver rating, a NASCAR stat that shows a driver’s total performance based on a litany of statistics, since the start of the 2009 at Dover is a 135.6. In that time, that’s the best mark by any driver at any track.
A win on Sunday could also make Johnson the only active driver with at least nine wins on a track. In fact, in NASCAR Cup Series history, only six drivers have won at least nine times on a single track: Petty, Dale Earnhardt, Waltrip, David Pearson, Cale Yarborough and Rusty Wallace.