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Race Preview: This is Talladega

SEASON-TO-DATE: After nine NASCAR Sprint Cup races this season, Jimmie Johnson owns the fourth-highest driver rating with a score of 103.5 and ranks eighth in the driver standings. His 501 laps led rank second just behind Kevin Harvick (538 laps led).

VALSPAR RESERVE: Johnson will drive the Lowe’s/Valspar Reserve Chevrolet SS in this weekend’s race. Valspar Reserve, available exclusively at Lowe’s starting May 1, is a new interior and exterior paint with HydroChroma™ Technology that is stain resistant and fade resistant - so the colors you love stay the colors you love.

BOYS & GIRLS CLUB: The Lowe’s pit crew will put Valspar Reserve to the test this week when they revamp a game room at a local Boys & Girls Club in Concord, N.C. The team will use Lowe’s blue paint and decorate the room with Team 48 decals as well as other racing memorabilia.

AT TALLADEGA:In 24 Cup starts at Talladega, Johnson has two wins, six top-five finishes and 10 top-10s. He has an average finish of 17th and has led 297 laps. Johnson has earned one pole position at the 2.66-mile superspeedway.

DRIVER RATING:Johnson has the seventh-highest driver rating at Talladega with a score of 85.1 during the past nine years. 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. The driver rating number is used pre-race as a prediction tool and post-race as a performance evaluator.

CHASSIS CHOICES: Crew chief Chad Knaus has selected Hendrick Motorsports Chassis No. 48-871 for this weekend at Talladega which is a new car.  The backup car is Chassis No. 48-853, which Johnson most recently raced to a fifth-place result at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway in February.

#TEAMJJF WELLNESS CHALLENGE:  The JJ5K, the first event of the Jimmie Johnson Foundation Wellness Challenge, took place on April 27 in Huntersville, N.C. Johnson posted a personal record of 19 minutes, 6 seconds during the 3.1-mile race.  The next event in the four part series is July 12. For more information or to sign up, visithttp://jjfwellnesschallenge.racesonline.com/. Johnson and his wife Chandra launched the Jimmie Johnson Foundation in February 2006. The mission of the foundation is to assist children, families, and communities in need throughout the United States. For additional information on the Jimmie Johnson Foundation, visitwww.JimmieJohnsonFoundation.org.

BLUE BUNNY HELMET OF HOPE:This Friday, May 2, Jimmie Johnson will announce the winners of the 2014 Blue Bunny Helmet of Hope. The chosen charities will be featured on the helmet that Johnson will wear this July in the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. For more information go towww.JimmieJohnsonFoundation.org.

HENDRICK AT TALLADEGA:In 60 events (194 starts) at Talladega, Hendrick Motorsports has 11 wins, 49 top-five finishes and 72 top-10s. The organization’s 11 victories rank second all-time behind Richard Childress Racing (12). In Hendrick Motorsports’ most recent Talladega win, Dale Earnhardt Jr. pushed Johnson to Victory Lane in April 2011. Johnson, the outside pole sitter, matched the closest margin of victory recorded - .002 seconds - since the use of electronic scoring.

30TH ANNIVERSARY: In 2014, Hendrick Motorsports is celebrating its 30th anniversary in NASCAR. The organization began in 1984 with five employees and 5,000 square feet of work space. It has grown to more than 500 employees with a 430,000-square-foot facility that sits on 140 acres. Driver Geoff Bodine won the Martinsville (Va.) Speedway spring race on April 29, 1984, marking Hendrick Motorsports’ first victory in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS FAN DAY:The 2014 Hendrick Motorsports Fan Fest will be held from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Friday May, 23 at the team’s Concord, North Carolina, facility. An array of free entertainment will be available for the whole family, including question-and-answer sessions with the organization’s drivers and crew chiefs. Visithttp://www.hendrickmotorsports.com/fans/fanfest/for details.


JIMMIE JOHNSON, DRIVER, NO. 48 LOWE’S/VALSPAR RESERVE CHEVROLET SS (ON TALLADEGA.): “The spring Talladega race is always a great race. Granted, things can happen out of your control and you can be taken out in heartbeat, but for the most part, to me it’s a lot of fun. With the rules package as it is, it encourages racing from the drop of the green flag to the checkered so you have to have strategy throughout the race. Qualifying is going to be pretty interesting – I’d say it’s one for the fans to watch. It’s going to be fun.”

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Jeff Gordon
Denny Hamlin
Ryan Newman
Jimmie Johnson
Started: 8th
Finished: 1st
November 15th, 2015
2:30 p.m. ET on NBC
Kobalt Hot Pass