MaIt took Jimmie Johnson just 13 races into his rookie season with Hendrick Motorsports to prove to his team he was a rare talent.
HOMESTEAD, Fla. - Soaked in sweat, champagne and success, Jimmie Johnson celebrated yet another NASCAR championship by sipping a beer.
HOMESTEAD, Fla. - Matt Kenseth and his Joe Gibbs Racing team took a huge step away from their bad performance last week by winning the pole Friday at Homestead-Miami Speedway for the championship-deciding race.
HOMESTEAD, Fla. - There was no trash talking, no attempts at mind games. If there was tension or nerves, nobody could tell.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Determined to learn exactly what caused his mystery illness in 2011, Trevor Bayne made repeated visits to the Mayo Clinic over the last two years, asking questions about his health and medical history.
Matt Kenseth did his best to put on a brave face following his worst performance of the season, which just happened to come at the worst possible time in his championship battle with Jimmie Johnson.
AVONDALE, Ariz. - Brad Keselowski rolled into Phoenix International Raceway a year ago locked into a tight championship battle with Jimmie Johnson, and left the track poised to claim his first Sprint Cup title.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Just like last season, Jimmie Johnson enters the next-to-last race with a seven-point lead in the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship. He came up empty in his bid for a sixth title last year, but is more confident about his chances following Sunday's dominating victory at Texas.
FORT WORTH, Texas - Jimmie Johnson is the leader again in the Chase for the Sprint Cup title after a dominating victory Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway.
FORT WORTH, Texas - Matt Kenseth started to answer a question about how he could affect Jimmie Johnson on the track when the five-time Sprint Cup champion suddenly leaned around a corner of the room.
FORT WORTH, Texas - Jeff Gordon acknowledges that most of his answers will be similar when asked about his championship chances, usually along the lines of wait and see what happens.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - If Greg Biffle could go back to Sunday, when he grabbed Jimmie Johnson by the collar and spun him around to confront him, he'd probably reach for the five-time champion's arm.
Clint Bowyer fielded fan questions for nearly 30 minutes Monday at the NASCAR Hall of Fame, where the topics covered everything from his recent appearance on an episode of "Duck Dynasty" to his displeasure with people who text while driving.
MARTINSVILLE, Va. - Jeff Gordon used an unprecedented chairman's selection to get into the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship 48 hours before the opening race.
MARTINSVILLE, Va. - Matt Kenseth will be right behind Jimmie Johnson when the green flag drops at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Drivers have been fretting about the second round of NASCAR's Chase for the Sprint Cup championship for weeks.
DOVER, Del. - Kurt Busch looked around and saw NASCAR's biggest stars crowding his car. Dale Earnhardt, Bobby Labonte, Dale Jarrett all zooming past Busch and giving the rookie driver a reality check - his racing heroes from TV were now his toughest competitors on the track.
DOVER, Del. - Tony Stewart's walk back to his motorhome was halted by a pair of old friends. Two longtime NASCAR participants stopped Stewart not far from his car for a lengthy chat in the Dover garage.
CANANDAIGUA, N.Y. - After more than six weeks in limbo, NASCAR star Tony Stewart finally got the news he had been hoping for.
As Brad Keselowski flaunted his fast car by leading session after session at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Joey Logano took a good-natured swipe at his teammate by asking him via Twitter to slow down.
The decision whether to charge three-time NASCAR champion Tony Stewart in the August death of a fellow driver at a sprint car race in upstate New York will be up to a grand jury.
AJ Allmendinger and Aric Almirola were the underdogs of the Chase, the two drivers nobody thought could win the Sprint Cup championship.
JOLIET, Ill. - With rain in Friday's forecast at Chicagoland Speedway, the only time on track became a strategy session for the championship contenders.
CHICAGO - It's been 11 weeks since Jimmie Johnson's last victory and he suffered through one of his typical summer swoons.
A win in the season-opening Daytona 500 guaranteed Dale Earnhardt Jr. a spot in NASCAR's title race. It also allowed his Hendrick Motorsports team to live in the moment on the race track and not get hung up on results.
Tony Stewart has one final shot to make the Chase, and it's not a very good one: He must win Saturday night at Richmond, where he last visited Victory Lane in 2002.
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