NASCAR AMERICA: Jimmie Johnson ready for comeback after tough 2014 (VIDEO)

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After capturing his sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship in 2013, Jimmie Johnson was set on earning a record-tying seventh crown in 2014.

But instead of making history, Johnson and his No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports team were unable to hold on to their dominant form. They scored four wins in the spring, but a rough summer ultimately led to a second-round exit in the Chase for the Sprint Cup.

When Johnson recalled what went wrong in 2014 to NASCAR AMERICA’s Dave Burns, he noted that several hallmarks of the No. 48’s previous titles were missing.

“There are some things I’m not so proud and [crew chief] Chad [Knaus] is not so proud of,” Johnson said. “The lack of team unity, the lack of a team performing in harmony as we should – those were all strong suits of the 48 and those were the things that led us to our championships…People tried to mimic what we had and what we did.

“We didn’t do that last year and I truly feel within that is where the performance comes.”

For more on Johnson’s thoughts about the upcoming 2015 season, the retirement of Jeff Gordon, and his own “indicators” for when he’ll consider hanging up his helmet, check out his full interview with Burns at the top.

NEOM McLaren Formula E announces Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast for 2023 season

McLaren Formula E Hughes
McLaren Racing
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Doubling down on their commitment to electric auto sports, McLaren Racing announced Jake Hughes will join Rene Rast to compete in the 2023 Formula E Series (FE), which completes their driver lineup.

The NEOM McLaren FE team was formed by the acquisition of the Mercedes-EQ Formula E team that won the 2021 and 2022 championships with Stoffel Vandoorne and Nyck de Vries behind the wheel.

“Today’s announcement feels like a long time coming,” said Ian James, managing director of NEOM McLaren Electric Racing in a release. “Since May this year, when we first announced McLaren Racing’s entry into Formula E, we have been working tirelessly to get in place the best possible team and structure for sustainable success.

“On the one hand, we have been working on the retention of the amazing talent that already was in place before going into the transitional phase. I’m proud to say I think we’ve done a great job on that front.

“On the other hand, we have been focusing on putting in place new processes and new talent – and the latter includes the drivers.”

The driver lineup clasps the two hands together.

Hughes brings 10 years racing experience in single seater cars, including a role with the acquired Mercedes-EQ team as a reserve and development driver for the past two seasons. He is the 2013 BRDC Formula 4 champion and has multiple wins in Formula 2, including two in 2020.

Announced in August, Rast joins the team after earning two podium finishes and six top-fives in 22 career Formula E starts for Audi Sport ABT before returning to the DTM Series last year. Rast’s best finish in Formula E came in the Puebla E Prix when he finished second to teammate Lucas di Grassi by less than a half second.

McLaren’s commitment to Formula E comes one year after they entered the Extreme E rally series in 2022 with Tanner Foust and Emma Gilmour in the driver lineup. After a modest start to the season, the McLaren XE drivers crossed the finish line first in Round 4 in Chile, but were assessed a time penalty that dropped them to fifth. Last week in the season finale in Uruguay, they held onto a hard-earned second place finish.