|ALL-STAR GOAT: Jimmie Johnson has won the NASCAR All-Star Race a record four times, more than any other driver in history. His first victory came on May 17, 2003, when the race was called “The Winston” and the driver was exactly 27 years and 8 months old, making him the seventh-youngest competitor to win the event. Johnson took home another victory in 2006 and went back-to-back in 2012 and 2013. The former All-Star Race winner has a lifetime bid for the event and will roll off in 14th by virtue of a random draw.
PRECURSOR TO THE CUP: On 10 occasions, drivers have won the All-Star Race and NASCAR Cup Series championship in the same season. Johnson has done it twice — in 2006 and 2013 — joining four NASCAR Hall of Famers: Jeff Gordon (2001, 1997, 1995), Dale Earnhardt (1993, 1990, 1987), Rusty Wallace (1989) and Darrell Waltrip (1985). The last five times it occurred, the drivers were from Hendrick Motorsports (Johnson and Gordon).
LEADER OF THE PACK: Johnson has led 238 laps in his 18 starts in the All-Star Race, which rank him third among all drivers in the event’s history. Kyle Busch is first with 271 laps led followed by NASCAR Hall of Famer Bill Elliott, who has led 267 laps.
ABOVE AVERAGE: Johnson has an average finish of 7.28 over the course of 18 All-Star Race starts. He holds the 10th-best average finish among drivers who have a minimum of two starts in the event.
HONORING A FALLEN DRIVER: Crew chief Cliff Daniels cut his racing teeth driving late models at Langley Speedway in Hampton, Virginia. Last weekend, his competitor and friend, Shawn Balluzzo, who raced with the No. 48 car number, lost his life during an event at the track. On Wednesday night, Daniels and the No. 48 Ally team will honor Balluzzo in the NASCAR All-Star Race by carrying a decal on Johnson’s Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE.
ALL-STAR CREW: Members of the No. 48 crew include tire changer Calvin Teague from Taylorsville, North Carolina, who was a baseball pitcher at Appalachian State University; fueler Brandon Harder, an Oak Harbor, Ohio, native; tire carrier Allen Stallings from Manteo, North Carolina, a former linebacker who broke every major tackle record in Greensboro College football history; tire changer Donnie Tasser from Belle Vernon, Pennsylvania, who wrestled at the University of Pittsburgh; and jackman Kyle Tudor from Augusta, Georgia, who played linebacker at East Carolina University. The team is led by pit crew coach Jon Carvin, a native of Oneonta, New York. He was a starting linebacker for the University of Albany football team, which won the Northeast Conference championship in 2002 and 2003.