INDIANAPOLIS – Seven-time NASCAR Cup champion Jimmie Johnson will not race full-time in 2023.
Johnson spent the last two seasons in the IndyCar Series. He raced on street and road courses in 2021, starting 12 events. He added the ovals in 2022 to run the full schedule of 17 races.
“This was a difficult choice for me, but in my heart, I know it’s the right one,” Johnson said in a statement. “I’m not exactly sure what the next chapter holds, but if an opportunity comes along that makes sense, I will consider it. I still have a bucket list of racing events.”
Johnson drove the No. 48 Honda for Chip Ganassi Racing. His best finish in his first season was 17th at Laguna Seca and Long Beach. His best result last season was fifth in the second race at Iowa.
The four-time Brickyard 400 winner had a solid month of May, qualifying 12th for the 106th Indianapolis 500. He was having a strong race before crashing in turn two with less than 10 laps to go and finishing 28th.
“Competing at this level in IndyCar has been such a great experience,” said Johnson. “I couldn’t have asked for a better team to race for. Everyone worked extremely hard for the last two seasons, pushing to get the best performances out of me every single week.”
“We are fully supportive of Jimmie,” Ganassi said. “He has been a valued member of our team and if we can find a way to continue working together, we would like to do so.”
Johnson told The Associated Press he’d consider running “The Double” – the Indianapolis 500 and NASCAR’s Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte in the same day in the future.
As for his immediate future, Johnson will race a sports car in the Petit Le Mans event at Road Atlanta this weekend.