Johnson signs extension with Hendrick through 2015


HOMESTEAD, Fla. (AP) — Jimmie Johnson, on the verge of a NASCAR record fourth consecutive championship,
signed a contract extension Friday to drive for Hendrick Motorsports through the 2015 season.
The announcement comes just two days before Johnson is likely to wrap up the Sprint Cup championship at
Homestead-Miami Speedway. Johnson goes into Sunday’s finale with a 108-point lead over Hendrick teammate
Mark Martin and needs only to finish 25th or better to win the title.
"Jimmie is charting new territory in our sport, and that’s due to a combination of natural talent
and unsurpassed work ethic," team owner Rick Hendrick said. "How he’s committed himself is
just incredible, and it shows in everything that he does — not just on the racetrack.
"There’s no question that he’s one of the great champions in all of sports, and he’s not done
Johnson’s previous contract expired after the 2010 season. This is his third contract extension since
joining Hendrick in 2001.
Home improvement chain Lowe’s also signed an extension as primary sponsor of Johnson’s No. 48 Chevrolet
through the 2013 season.
"Jimmie Johnson and Hendrick Motorsports are a key part of our marketing efforts and outreach,"
said Lowe’s chairman Robert Niblock. "We believe this is the best combination in racing, and we’re
proud to have Jimmie carry the Lowe’s name in NASCAR."
There was no immediate announcement on crew chief Chad Knaus, who has previously extended his contracts
to stay in line with Johnson. His contract is through the 2010 season.
Johnson and Knaus have been partnered since Johnson’s 2002 rookie season.

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