TALLADEGA, Ala. — One is trying to finish a restrictor-plate event for the first time this season, the other is trying to wedge himself back into the Sprint Cup championship race. But Hendrick Motorsports teammates Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. have one thing in common — neither wants to wait too long to try to win this time around at Talladega Superspeedway.
This race a year ago essentially knocked Junior and Johnson out of the title hunt, when the Hendrick duo waited too long to try and work their way up from their safe spot near the back of the pack. The result was a 25th-place finish for NASCAR’s most popular driver and a 26th-place finish for the five-time champion, which left both too far behind to challenge Tony Stewart for the championship.
We’re far enough behind really where we could start throwing some things out there and seeing what sticks.