NASCAR legend Jimmie Johnson cleared to return from coronavirus

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

NASCAR legend Jimmie Johnson has been cleared to return to competition. He is expected to be back in his No. 48 Ally Bank ride this weekend for the Quaker State 400 at Kentucky Speedway.

Johnson tested positive for the coronavirus last Friday. He was then forced to miss the race Big Machine Hand Sanitizer 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Ally Chevrolet driver Jimmie Johnson poses on the Start/Finish line to show support for front line workers prior to the NASCAR Cup Series Pocono 350
Jimmie Johnson poses on the Start/Finish line to show support for front line workers prior to the NASCAR Cup Series Pocono 350 (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

The seven-time champion was replaced by Justin Allgaier for the race.

“My family is so grateful for the incredible love and support we’ve received over the last several days,” Johnson said. “I especially want to thank Justin Allgaier for stepping in for me at Indy and being a true pro. I’m excited about getting back to business with my team this weekend.”

Johnson was met the criteria in place by NASCAR, which included two negative tests within 24 hours apart from each other. He also received clearance from a doctor on Tuesday night to order to get back to racing.

Hendrick Motorsports said that Johnson had a negative test on Monday and Tuesday. The team also said that their legend never ‘experienced symptoms.’

The team also said that four crew members were tested following Johnson’s positive test on Friday. They were negative.

However, a member of Hendrick Motorsports road crew is in self-quarantine following Johnson’s positive test. This could potentially be Johnson’s public relations representative.

Before the Fourth of July holiday weekend, Johnson became the first NASCAR to test positive for the coronavirus. Allgaier, who made a Cup Series start in years, finished 37th in the interim ride at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

He was involved in a major crash on pit road that took out several cars on lap 17. Ryan Blaney’s crew member was also injured in the crash, as he was squeezed between Blaney’s car and another car.

Before the coronavirus positive test, Johnson had started 663 straight starts dating back to the 2002 season.

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