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Jimmie Johnson Again? That's three-for-five this season

  Jimmie Johnson is on a tear....both lucky and good, again, in winning Bristol, which puts him just 14 points out of the Sprint Cup tour lead (Photo: Getty Images for NASCAR) 

   By Mike Mulhern

   BRISTOL, Tenn.
   With three wins already this season, now with Sunday's come-from-behind victory at one of the few tracks he's never won at, Jimmie Johnson looks back in championship form just five races into 2010.
    "I thought we were in trouble there, but....man, about time," Johnson said after pulling off a late charge to trip up five rivals and log career win No. 50, this one over Tony Stewart and Kurt Busch in the Food City 500. Putting 50 tour wins in perspective, only 11 other men in NASCAR history have hit that mark. Only three others have made it to 50 any faster.
    Busch dominated the 3-1/2 hour race, leading the most laps. But he and Johnson, who may have had the second-best car in the field, both took four tires on the final round of pit stops, with 14 laps to go. And four others – Greg Biffle, Matt Kenseth, Carl Edwards, and Stewart – gambled on just two tires.
    So Johnson and Busch were both stuck in the third row on the final restart with 10 laps to go.
    Johnson got a great restart and blasted up to second in just two laps, then took the lead with seven to go. With that he was gone.
    Busch, however, got bottled up for a few laps, and by the time he got some clean air, Johnson was too far ahead. Another milestone: this was the last race for the NASCAR 'wing,' and of the 93 tour events with that particular spoiler Johnson won far more than anyone else, 22.
    "I thought four tires was the way to go," Busch, who led 278 of the 500 laps, said. "We had the car to beat on long runs, and that weak spot for Jimmie.
   "I felt we were the car to beat. Our only weakness was on short runs, and
   "Poured my heart and soul into this race.....I feel exhausted, disappointed....
   "They'll be tough to beat at Martinsville...and we'll be lucky to finish 10th there. We looked at the lap chart here Saturday and saw Jimmie was the man to beat.
   "The outside lane seemed to prevail all day, and Jimmie had the outside for that restart, and we got hung up behind Carl. I was hoping Carl would have gotten a better restart; I had a game plan to go under him. When guys have only two tires, they tend to hold everybody up, spinning their tires on restarts. I was going to rough up Carl and get around him....
   "Jimmie was in the outside lane, and the seas just parted for him. These restarts are just a crapshoot.
   "I'm thinking the Busch brothers can't drive that good, that it's all Steve Addington. Maybe Steve is the missing link for us at Penske Racing."

The results of Sunday's Bristol Food City 500


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  At the finish line: Jimmie Johnson, Tony Stewart, Kurt Busch (Photo: Getty Images for NASCAR)

Looking back I think this was

Looking back I think this was a key win for the number 48 team, Jimmie was flawless during the race, and I think it put Denny Hamlin on notice that he was coming for him. Because after that race Denny's team couldn't handle the pressure and made several key mistakes that lead to my number 48 winning the championship. I think next year they should change the car wraps on the 48 car to show 5 championship trophy's on his back bumper. Good job Jimmie and let's hope Gordon can compete a little better next year. I would love to see them go 1st and 2nd next year in the championship.

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