CONCORD, N.C. – Jimmie Johnson was honored with the prestigious Bill France Award of Excellence Wednesday night during the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series Awards.
Johnson, who concluded his last full-time season in the Cup Series, was presented with the award virtually for his success and character on and off the track. The seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion is the only driver in the sport’s history to have won five titles in a row (2006-2010).
Ben Kennedy, NASCAR founder Bill France's great-grandson, presented Johnson with the award.
"What an honor this is," Johnson said to Kennedy. "I'm so thankful for the contributions of your family and the vision that your family had to create this premiere form of racing. To play a part of that and to have the success I've had in this sport is so meaningful to me."
Johnson has 83 points-paying wins in the Cup Series along with his seven titles. He also has 232 top-five finishes, 374 top-10s, 36 earned pole awards and he has led 18,941 laps in his career.
Off the track, Johnson and his wife, Chandra, started the Jimmie Johnson Foundation nearly 15 years ago. The organization provides funds to K-12 public education through various charitable endeavors, including the Blue Bunny Helmet of Hope campaign and the Champions Grant program.
Overall, the Jimmie Johnson Foundation has raised more than $12 million to support various educational causes.
The Bill France Award of Excellence is not given every year. In its history, it has only been presented 27 times since its inception in 1953.
"I'm truly surprised and honored to receive this award," Johnson said. "I wasn't expecting it walking in here. I know the importance of it and I'm really, really honored.