Jimmie Johnson has three wins this season, which is tied for second with Kyle Larson behind Martin Truex Jr. But you wouldn’t know it based on his recent finishes this summer.
In fact, this isn’t the first time Johnson has experienced a slump during the summer months. He told NBC Sports he still can’t figure out why he struggles throughout most of the summer, but he hasn’t gotten too discouraged.
“I wish I knew why summers were so hard on us,” Johnson said. “Believe me, we sit down every winter and look at the summer stretch and think, ‘How can we turn it around? How can we avoid that summer slump?’ But most years, damn it, it shows up, and it is so frustrating.
“So I think it just shows how hard it is to stay on top. I think all teams have lulls in the season, and we’ve been able to typically start well and end well, and that’s served us really good over the years.”
Johnson is 11th in the standings despite his three victories, and he’s failed to finish five races this season.
His last five finishes have been 11, 19, 29, 35 and 27. His last win came at Dover on June 4.
“There’s probably seven or eight years that feel a lot like (2017),” Johnson said. “It’s not just last year. We have some decent races in the summer, but more bad ones than good ones.”
Despite his summer slump last season, Johnson still won his seventh Cup championship. Another championship wouldn’t be surprising given his talent and track record, but he will need to snap out of his slump sooner rather than later.
(h/t NBC Sports)