What a great day for the series. Great day for the sport. Great day for the Greatest Spectacle In Racing.
Jimmie Johnson will be spending all of 2022 focused full-time on IndyCar - ovals included. That's outstanding. Last year we saw JJ as a 45 year old rookie in the series who only did road courses and street circuits for Ganassi. Now after testing the ovals at Texas and IMS, Johnson will be qualifying for the 106th Indy 500 in May and running all the ovals as well.
This is giant. It'd be like if Michael Jordan would have made it in the Big Leagues then made it to the World Series. This crossover not only signifies the growth and continued success of IndyCar, but also will make this year's Indy 500 even more must-see than it usually is. I think it just goes to show how truly difficult it is to be a driver in IndyCar and a successful one at that - and especially for the Indy 500. One of the best drivers in the history of motorsport needed a year and some more time to get fully ready to take on IMS at 228+ MPH. That's no slight to Jimmie either. It's just the truth about how hard and dangerous that kind of racing is that all these guys make look so routine year in and year out every May.
Johnson went on The Today Show this morning to make the announcement and said he "had massive FOMO" after attending and covering his first Indy 500 last May. That'll happen, Jimmie. Happens to all of us who attend that spectacular event on Memorial Day Weekend.
Damn I can't wait. We've seen F1 stars like Fernando Alonso make his way over to 16th and Georgetown for May. Now we get to see one of the biggest stars ever to come out of NASCAR face the some challenge. Must-see TV. Is It May Yet?