NASCAR Names Final Addition to 75 Greatest Drivers List

Getty Jimmie Johnson celebrates a win at Dover Motor Speedway.

NASCAR has spent weeks leading up to Throwback Weekend expanding its Greatest Drivers list to 75 total names. Now, it has revealed the final one ahead of the trip to Darlington Raceway.

As expected, Jimmie Johnson is the final name on the list of Greatest Drivers. He adds seven championships and 83 Cup Series wins to the group’s total, and he adds another accomplishment to his resume.

The announcement took place during the May 11 episode of “NASCAR Race Hub.” The driver-turned-owner made an appearance on the FS1 show, and he officially heard the news from Kaitlyn Vincie, Bobby Labonte, and Chad Knaus.

As a video showed, Knaus delivered the news to Johnson during a Garage 56 test at Sebring International Raceway. This was fitting considering that Knaus was atop the pit box as Johnson won his seven championships.

The Full List of 75 Greatest Drivers

GettyJimmie Johnson does a burnout at Dover Motor Speedway.

Back in 1998, NASCAR celebrated a major moment in its history by unveiling its list of the 50 Greatest Drivers. Fast-forward to 2023, and NASCAR expanded the list by 25 names selected by a panel of voters.

The original list of Greatest Drivers included such names as Dale Earnhardt, Richard Petty, David Pearson, Bobby Allison, Davey Allison, Buck Baker, Buddy Baker, Geoff Bodine, Neil Bonnett, Red Byron, Jerry Cook, Ralph Earnhardt, Bill Elliott, Richie Evans, Red Farmer, Tim Flock, AJ Foyt, Harry Gant, Jeff Gordon, Dale Jarrett, Ray Hendrick, and Ernie Irvan.

The original list continued with Jack Ingram, Bobby Isaac, Ned Jarrett, Junior Johnson, Alan Kulwicki, Terry Labonte, Fred Lorenzen, Tiny Lund, Mark Martin, Hershel McGriff, Cotton Owens, Marvin Panch, Benny Parsons, Lee Petty, Tim Richmond, Fireball Roberts, Ricky Rudd, Marshall Teague, Herb Thomas, Curtis Turner, Rusty Wallace, Darrell Waltrip, Joe Weatherly, Bob Welborn, Rex White, Glen Wood, Cale Yarborough, and LeeRoy Yarbrough.

The expanded list features active drivers and retired icons alike. The current full-time additions are Kyle Larson, Denny Hamlin, Chase Elliott, Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr., and Kevin Harvick.

The list of new additions also includes Sam Ard, Carl Edwards, Mike Stefanik, Matt Kenseth, Ryan Newman, Randy LaJoie, Kurt Busch, Kasey Kahne, Larry Phillips, Bobby Labonte, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Burton, Ron Hornaday Jr., Sterling Marlin, Greg Biffle, and Tony Stewart.

Johnson Conquered NASCAR’s Biggest Races

GettyJimmie Johnson’s team celebrates a win at Richmond Raceway.

Winning seven Cup Series championships is a feat that essentially guarantees Johnson will be a Hall of Famer in his first year of eligibility. It also ensured that he would be an automatic addition to the list of NASCAR’s Greatest Drivers.

Going a step further, the wins that Johnson delivered during his career only added to his legacy. He conquered the hardest tracks on the schedule, and he captured the biggest races.

Just look at Johnson’s collection of Crown Jewels. He won the Coca-Cola 600 four times in his career (2003-2005, 2014). He also won the Daytona 500 twice (2006, 2013). Johnson won the Southern 500 twice (2004, 2012) and the Brickyard 400 four times (2006, 2008, 2009, 2012) while becoming one of the few drivers to win all four Crown Jewel events.

Of course, Crown Jewels are not the only races that matter. There are some events that are equally important due to the track difficulty or the iconic trophy given to the winning driver. Two examples are Dover Motor Speedway and Martinsville Speedway, tracks where Johnson won a combined 20 times.

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