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Jimmie Johnson cleared to return to NASCAR competition

2020 Phoenix I Dominic Aragon Jimmie Johnson
Photo by Dominic Aragon/TRE

Hendrick Motorsports announced Wednesday morning that seven-time Jimmie Johnson has been cleared to return to NASCAR Cup Series competition.

Johnson will drive his no. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE in this weekend’s Quaker State 400 at Kentucky Speedway (2:30 p.m. ET; TV: Fox Sports 1), just one week after sitting out at Indianapolis, which was the first instance of him missing a race in his Cup career that began in 2002.

Johnson did not race at Indianapolis after testing positive for COVID-19 Friday afternoon. However, he tested negative twice this week – on Monday and Tuesday – and was cleared by his physician Tuesday evening in accordance with NASCAR guidelines. Th

“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.”

Following Johnson’s diagnosis, four Hendrick Motorsports crew members were tested for COVID-19 with all four receiving negative results. The No. 48 team will have its regular personnel roster for Sunday’s event at Kentucky.

Johnson, 44, is currently 15th in the driver standings, 46 points ahead of 17th place Erik Jones who is currently the first driver below the cutoff for the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series playoffs.

Hendrick Motorsports

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