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Sunday at Michigan International Speedway, Jimmie Johnson started at the rear of the field in a backup car and proceeded to jump inside the top 20 within the first 100 laps of the race. He wasn’t able to crack the top 10, however, and ultimately crossed the finish line in 19th.

Since capturing his third win of the season at Dover International Speedway on June 4, Johnson has captured two top-10 finishes in the last 10 races.

This weekend, the NASCAR Cup Series heads to Bristol Motor Speedway, a track where Johnson was won twice, and his 18 career top-10s are second-most among active drivers at the track.

The seven-time champion tweeted his excitement as the trip provides the next chance for the No. 48 team to get back on the winning track.


Early in the final segment of Sunday’s race, Kasey Kahne was in the process of passing a competitor when he came up the track and made contact with the No. 19 car. That sent him toward the wall, and the resulting damage ended his day prematurely.

“We had a pretty good LiftMaster Chevrolet, trying to go forward,” he said.

Like his teammate Johnson, Kahne started the race at the rear of the field. He knocked on the door of the top 10 multiple times before the incident took him out of the race.

“I was passing Daniel (Suarez), he was going backwards and as I went under him, I’m just coming out to the wall thinking we are going to be maybe side-by-side, maybe not, and we hit right on the right-rear corner,” he explained. “So, just a racing deal, but that really shouldn’t have happened. I was going by him, so I don’t really understand why we hit, but we did.”


Sunday at Michigan, Dale Earnhardt Jr. took home a 14th-place result -- the second Hendrick Motorsports teammate to the finish line, behind Elliott in eighth.

Earnhardt said afterward that the race was a mixed bag.

"Well, it was all right -- it wasn't great, it wasn't terrible," he said. "I think at times we needed track position and we might have been able to run in the top five, but I didn’t know a lot of guys that really passed many people. It was really pretty even out there competition-wise."

Like his teammate Johnson, Earnhardt tweeted that he's ready for his next chance to get on the racetrack this weekend at Bristol, a track where he has won and his 16 career top-10 finishes are just behind Johnson to tie for third among active drivers at the track.