Sports

J.J., Knaus, D. Allison inducted into NASCAR HOF

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Jimmie Johnson and crew chief Chad Knaus, who teamed up to win a record-tying seven Cup championships, were inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame on Friday night.

The sport’s dominant duo, both first-ballot inductees, joined Donnie Allison, an original member of the “Alabama Gang,” in a celebration at the Charlotte Convention Center as part of the Class of 2024. Janet Guthrie, the first woman to race in both the Daytona 500 and Indianapolis 500, was inducted as the Landmark Award winner for contributions to NASCAR.

Johnson won 83 Cup races – tied for sixth most in NASCAR history – in the Hendrick Motorsports No. 48 Chevrolet, all but two of them with Knaus as crew chief. Knaus, now the vice president of competition for Hendrick, was suspended for two of Johnson’s wins, including a Daytona 500 victory.

Their five straight Cup championships from 2006-2010 are a NASCAR record.

Johnson won two Daytona 500s in the Knaus-built Chevrolet along with 11 wins at Dover, nine at Martinsville, eight at Charlotte, seven at Texas and four at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Johnson was inducted by his wife, Chandra Janway.

Janway, who wasn’t present when Johnson was selected for the Hall of Fame last August, has kept a low public profile and the couple now lives in London following the deaths of her parents and nephew in what police believe to be a double murder-suicide last June.

Allison, who won 10 Cup races, was voted in on the Pioneer ballot. He becomes the final member of the Alabama Gang to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, joining brother Bobby Allison and Red Farmer.

Guthrie did not attend the event, but sent a message via video thanking several drivers for their help with her career, including Allison and Cale Yarborough.

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