|Jimmie Johnson, driver of the No. 48 Lowe’s Patriotic Chevrolet SS, will be in the media center at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Thursday, May 25, at 1:15 p.m. local time.
RED, WHITE AND LOWE’S BLUE: For the first time this season, Jimmie Johnson’s No. 48 Chevrolet SS will feature a patriotic theme. Longtime sponsor Lowe’s has a lengthy history of supporting the military. Currently, Lowe’s has more than 14,000 veterans, active military and Guard/Reserve employees.
IN HONOR OF: At Charlotte, the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet will carry the name of fallen Army Paratrooper SPC Michael Rodriguez. Last week, Johnson made the trek to Fort Bragg near Fayetteville, North Carolina, to unveil the special paint scheme as well as meet the family of SPC Rodriguez. A native of Sanford, North Carolina, and assigned to the 5th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, SPC Rodriguez was 20 when he was killed on April 23, 2007, while serving his country in Iraq. For his bravery and sacrifice, SPC Rodriguez earned the Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Combat Action Badge and Good Conduct Medals. For a recap of Johnson’s day at Fort Bragg, click here.
SERIES BEST AT CHARLOTTE: According to NASCAR’s loop data, Johnson has the series-best driver rating at Charlotte Motor Speedway with a score of 110.6. The driver rating is a formula that combines wins, top-15 finishes, average running position while on the lead lap, average speed under green, fastest lap, most laps led and lead-lap finishes. The maximum a driver can earn in each race is 150 points. Johnson also holds the series-best average running position with a score of 8.105.
NASCAR HALL OF FAME VOTE: As the defending NASCAR Cup Series champion, Johnson will join an elite group of voters on Wednesday afternoon at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Johnson will be among the panel responsible for nominating the 2018 class of inductees. It is the second time Johnson has been able to participate as a reigning champion, as he was part of the voting panel responsible for nominating the 2014 class as a result of winning the 2013 NASCAR Cup Series championship.
SEVEN-TIME IS ALL-TIME: Johnson has a total of eight Cup Series wins at Charlotte Motor Speedway, with four coming in the 600-mile event. He also leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Cup Series in laps led at Charlotte with 1,895 laps led in 31 starts. In 2016, Johnson won the October 500-mile event, which propelled him into the third round of the NASCAR playoffs.
JJ FIT FEST: Once Johnson completes 600 miles at Charlotte Motor Speedway, he will host his first Foundation Fit Fest on Monday, May 29, at Anne Springs Close Greenway in Fort Mill, South Carolina, beginning at 8 a.m. Events include a 5K, 8K, endurance mountain bike race and a kids Spartan event. There will be food trucks, live music and activities until 2 p.m. For more information or to register, go to www.JJFFitFest.org.