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Jimmie Johnson wins Sharp Aquos 500 to secure spot in the Chase

Jimmie Johnson won the Sharp Aquos 500 on Sunday to ensure a spot in the 12-man Chase to defend his NASCAR Nextel Cup championship.

Jimmie Johnson wins Sharp Aquos 500 to secure spot in the Chase Jimmie Johnson must have been worried recently, after a season full of accidents and plain bad luck, but on Sunday the Hendrick Motorsports driver won the California Speedway and ensured a spot in the Chase. It was Johnson's fifth win this season and 28th in his career. "I was certainly concerned. We had great race cars and bad luck. If you get four or five bad races in a row, you can get behind. Historically, we start the season strong, have a little bit of a struggle when we get to the warm weather and then get it going again. It seems like that's the way it's going and I'm just glad to be back in Victory Circle," Johnson said after winning the Sharp Aquos 500, 14 events after his fourth win of the season.

 Jimmie Johnson is now one of the eight drivers who had secured a place in the Chase with one race left, among which are his Hendrick teammates Jeff Gordon and Kyle Busch, who Johnson views as his major competitors. "Rick [Hendrick] has three cars capable of winning the championship, with Kyle and Jeff and me. When I first think of the fight for the championship, I think of my teammates. There are a lot of great cars out there, but I think the three of us are going to be tough," Johnson said.

 Jimmie Johnson clearly dominated the second half of the Sharp Aquos 500 race on Sunday to take the victory. A very important win, as NASCAR gives 10 bonus points to the winner of each race this season for the seeding of the 12 drivers who will compete in the Chase. After the California victory, Johnson is currently top seed, with 10 points ahead of the leader Jeff Gordon, who has four wins this season.

Published on 09/03/2007

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