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CONCORD, N.C. – At Bristol Motor Speedway, Jimmie Johnson took a difficult situation and turned it into his best finish of the season.   

After discovering a cut tire post-qualifying, Johnson and the No. 48 team were forced to start at the rear of the field.

But through two days of racing – the second half of the event was postponed to Monday due to rain – the No. 48 Lowe’s for Pros Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 kept pushing forward until Johnson took the checkered flag third.

“Definitely a strong race car,” Johnson said. “We've been talking about our cars performing better and driving better and creating speed the last three weeks or so, but to finally back it up with a solid finish is exactly what we needed. And to see my teammates with positive comments about their cars the last few weeks and some good results yielding from all of that, we definitely have it rolling in the right direction.”

Hendrick Motorsports has earned at least one top-10 finish in each of the past five races, and Monday at Bristol brought two top-five finishes in the same race for the first time since October 2017.

“It really is a great boost,” Johnson said. “I’m very proud of everybody at Hendrick Motorsports and thank everybody on this Lowe’s for Pros team.”

He called the third-place result “a big step in the right direction for us,” and it pushed the No. 48 team from 20th to 17th in the standings.

Now, he’s ready to capitalize on that momentum.

“I’m already ready to get back in the Lowe’s for Pros Chevy and looking forward to Richmond,” Johnson said. “We have put together some solid runs there lately and with the momentum from Bristol, I’m ready to roll.”