Every week, TicketForce brings you news on one of four industries: racing, sports, theatre, or music. This week’s #RacingWrap prompts a conversation comparing “The King” of NASCAR, Richard Petty, and rising star Jimmie Johnson. There has been talk of Jimmie Johnson being well on his way to becoming NASCAR’s greatest, but will he ever surpass Richard Petty’s achievements?
Petty is the most decorated driver in NASCAR history with 200 racing wins and seven NASCAR cup championships. He ended his 30-year racing career with a count of 1,184 total races. Jimmie Johnson began his racing career in 2001 and has driven in 434 races since then. He has 66 wins under his belt including five NASCAR championship wins in consecutive seasons.
Both drivers, however, are very skilled and have proven that they can win on any type of track. Petty and Johnson have both walking away victorious after races on superspeedways, intermediate tracks, short tracks, and road courses.
It is difficult to compare the drivers considering they come from two very different decades, but like Petty, Johnson has dominated his generation. There are many differences to take into account like scheduling, the tracks, and rest time. In Petty’s era, the schedule contained over 50 races, some on dirt tracks, most on shorter than half mile tracks, and in between time, drivers were allowed to go home and rest. Nowadays, races are on superspeedways about 1.5 miles long, each race is highly televised, and during the week instead of going home, drivers are parading around to their sponsors strengthening relationships and traveling to the next race.
What do you think, race fans? Does Johnson have the ability to surpass Petty? Or will there continue to be only one King of the track? Weigh in by commenting below or by sending a tweet to @ticketforce.