LONG POND, Pa. – When asked recently about navigating Pocono Raceway, Jimmie Johnson offered up one strategy.
“The first thing that comes to mind is fuel mileage,” said Johnson, driver of the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet. “You either have a really fast car and poor fuel mileage or you opt for not running so good. You roll the dice, stay out, save fuel. Of those two strategies, I’d rather have the better driving race car and fight for the finish.”
It’s a gamble, Johnson says. But the No. 48 team has experience touring the 2.5-mile triangular racetrack. In 19 Cup events at Pocono, Johnson has two wins, seven top-five finishes and 13 top-10s. Most recently, he scored a fourth-place finish in the June 12 Cup event, when he crossed the line behind teammate and race winner Jeff Gordon.
Per NASCAR’s loop data statistics, which were compiled during the last 13 Cup events at Pocono, Johnson owns the third-fastest restart speed and third-best average running position (10.024). He also has led all drivers during that time frame with 2,000 laps out of 2,514 total running inside the top 15.
On Sunday, watch Johnson and his Hendrick Motorsports teammates take on the Tricky Triangle for the second time this season at 1 p.m. ET on ESPN.