The post-season honors keep piling up for California native Jimmie Johnson and once again, the four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion is making history.
Johnson, who won the Pepsi 500 at the Auto Club Speedway in October and has four Fontana wins — the most by any driver — has been named the Male Athlete of the Year by members of the Associated Press, becoming the first race car driver to win this prestigious award in the 78 years it has been presented.
Johnson made history this season when he became the first driver to win four consecutive NASCAR Sprint Cup titles, accomplishing a feat that the likes of Richard Petty, Dale Earnhardt, Darrell Waltrip and Cale Yarborough were unable to achieve.
Johnson and the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet team at Hendrick Motorsports have elevated themselves to the “dynasty” level. And, taking into consideration that this award has been presented in the past to such superstars as Lance Armstrong, Michael Jordan, Joe Montana, Carl Lewis, Muhammad Ali, Sandy Koufax, Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Byron Nelson, Joe DiMaggio, Jesse Owens, and Joe Louis, it’s safe to say that Johnson has etched his named alongside some of sports’ greatest of all time.
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