Seven-time NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson surprised racing fans in early September by revealing that he will move to IndyCar on a full-time basis in 2021. Now he has found a new primary sponsor. Carvana Racing will serve as a partner for Chip Ganassi Racing and Johnson during the 2021 season.
Adam Stern of the Sports Business Journal posted an update on Twitter and said that Johnson and CGR had found a sponsor. He didn't know the identity of the sponsor at the time but later dropped the news about Carvana Racing. The company also confirmed the upcoming partnership with Johnson through a press release. Carvana Racing said that Johnson's new paint scheme will be unveiled prior to the start of the 2021 season.
Welcome, race fans! We are excited that you are here! 💙 pic.twitter.com/Cp843sxW9K— Carvana Racing (@CarvanaRacing) October 24, 2020
"Jimmie Johnson has already made his mark as one of the best NASCAR drivers in history, yet he's continuing to push himself with a new challenge," said Carvana Chief Brand Officer Ryan Keeton in a press release. "He's not resting, but raising the bar, and that's a mindset we can very much relate to. We're looking forward to that shared challenger mindset, teamed up with Chip Ganassi Racing, for what is sure to be a fun, exciting racing season."
Johnson also showcased his excitement about the new partnership, saying: "Carvana is a young, tech-forward, smart and aggressive company and is the perfect partner for this next challenge in my career. I've dreamed of racing in INDYCAR since I was a little kid. Going from one championship organization to another with CGR, you know the resources, including great people, are going to be there. To have friends like Scott [Dixon], Dario [Franchitti] and Doug [Duchardt] there to lean on and learn from just makes this transition so much better. 2021 is going to be a lot of fun!"
The 45-year-old Johnson has found plenty of success in stock car racing as a driver for Hendrick Motorsports. He is only one of three men to win seven championships, joining Richard Petty and the late Dale Earnhardt. Now he will strive to secure another award in the form of Rookie of the Year.
Johnson is currently scheduled to compete in the full road and street course schedule during the 2021 IndyCar season. The slate of events includes the recently-announced Nashville race and the famed Indy500. Prior to doing so, however, Johnson will take part in tests at Barber Motorsports Park and Laguna Seca in the No. 48 Carvana Honda.