Photo: Chris Owens/INDYCAR

Johnson’s Long Awaited INDYCAR Test Unfolds at Indy

By Luis Torres, Staff Writer

Seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson had his much anticipated NTT IndyCar Series test with Chip Ganassi Racing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course Tuesday.

It was third time’s a charm as the COVID-19 pandemic postponed an initial test with Arrow McLaren SP at Barber Motorsports Park back in March. Even earlier this month, Johnson was supposed to test with Ganassi following the “Indy Crossover” before testing positive for COVID-19, forcing him to miss his first NASCAR Cup race.

On his way to the test at Indy, Johnson described on his social media outlets that Tuesday’s test would feel like Christmas as he came from Colorado the night before.

Once arriving at IMS, the life-long dream of driving an Indy car machine became a reality and with the help from five-time NTT IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon, Johnson made most out of his opportunity as he navigated the 2.439-mile road course with Felix Rosenqvist’s No. 10 NTT Data Honda.

Following the first run, CGR’s Managing Director Mike Hull shared on Twitter what the four-time Brickyard 400 winner had to say:

“It certainly was my dream as a kid to be an INDYCAR driver, went a different direction which has served me well, this lights my fire,” said Johnson.

For the rest of the day, Johnson ran several laps and when it was all set and done, an awesome experience was an understatement.

“What a day. A wrap on an awesome, awesome experience,” said Johnson. “Big thanks to Chip Ganassi Racing, Scott Dixon, Chip and everybody involved. That blew my mind. I had such an awesome experience today.”

Time will ultimately tell when Johnson will make his INDYCAR debut as 2020 will be his final full year in NASCAR. In the meantime, he’ll take home a gift from IMS President Doug Boles and a once in a lifetime opportunity of running a current Indy car. Certainly, not a bad Christmas day for seven-time.

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From the Pacific Northwest, Luis is a University of Idaho graduate with a Bachelor's degree in Broadcasting and Digital Media. Ever since watching the 2003 Daytona 500, being involved in auto racing is all he's ever dreamed of doing. Over the years, Luis has focused on writing, video and photography ranging from Idaho athletics to auto racing with ambitions of having his work recognized.