Jimmie Johnson And Chase Elliott Crash In Practice At New Hampshire Motor Speedwayby Hunter Thomas September 22, 2017
LOUDON, N.H. – Hendrick Motorsports teammates, Jimmie Johnson and Chase Elliott destroyed their race cars in opening practice on Friday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
On just his second lap of the day in opening practice, seven-time Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion and Playoff competitor, Jimmie Johnson, entered Turn 3, lost control and slid into the outside wall. The No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet hit so hard that the right side and rear end was destroyed. The team was forced to unload the backup car for the ISM Connect 300 weekend. Johnson currently sits seventh in the Playoff standings.
“I had a good first lap and entering Turn 3 for my second lap just got in there with a lot of speed anticipated it sticking, didn’t quite stick and then once I got out of the PJ1 there was just really no slowing down or directing it off the wall at that point,” Johnson said. “Came around and it got the fence. Definitely not the way we wanted to start. Frustrating, but we will take it and go figure it out”
Chase Elliott, driver of the No. 24 Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet also lost control in Turn 3 and pounded the outside wall. Elliott’s team had to unload a back up car as well. Already this weekend, Elliott is without his crew chief, Alan Gustafson and car chief, Joshua Kirk following an L1-level penalty issued to the team after the Playoff opener at Chicagoland Speedway. Veteran crew chief, Kenny Francis is atop the pit box calling the shot’s for Elliott’s team this weekend in Loudon. Elliott sits eighth in the Playoff standings, just two points behind Johnson.
“I don’t know just got kind of loose into Turn 3 and got up the track and ran out of room,” Elliott said. “I hate it. That is not what we needed we are behind this weekend now, so that is never good, but it’s Friday, so we’ve got another day and a half to get things turned around and try to get it fixed.”
Since the backup cars were unloaded prior to qualifying on Friday, Johnson and Elliott won’t have to start from the rear of Sunday’s ISM Connect 300.
Coors Light Pole Qualifying for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series is slated to broadcast live on the NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) on Friday at 5:15 p.m. ET.
Photo Credit: Brenda Jane Photography