Jimmie Johnson: ‘I never wanted to be a champion. I just wanted to race’

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Seven-time Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson joins the NBC Sports set trying to describe the emotions that come with his record-tying title. Johnson could only call the moment surreal and amazing as he thought about joining the late Dale Earnhardt and Richard Petty.

“To hear Ken’s voice and all that, I got the goose bumps,” Johnson said of a video package on himself, Earnhardt, and Petty narrated by Ken Squier. “That is unbelievable. Wow.”

As for his emotions on being a seven-time champion:

“Just – I don’t know. Proud. Thankful. Blessed. As we all know, we all started racing because we love this sport and our families were involved, it’s what we do. I never dreamed of being famous. I never wanted to be famous. I never wanted to be a champion. I just wanted to race.

“And then to have everything transpire to what it has today and to be here and to tie those two legends, it’s surreal. Just amazing. I’m just so honored to be here, to be honest.”

In 15 full seasons, Johnson has amassed 80 wins, 330 top-10 finishes, 35 poles, and seven championships.

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