NASCAR legend Jimmie Johnson recently revealed the sacrifices his parents made to support his and his brother’s racing careers.
Jimmie Johnson is widely regarded as one of the greatest NASCAR drivers in history. The California native is tied with Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt for the most Cup Championships of all time (seven). He’s currently set to compete for Chip Ganassi Racing’s n0. 48 car in the 2022 IndyCar Series.
A lot of people have spoken about how Johnson’s racing career seems so flawless. His NASCAR career started with Jeff Gordon offering him a drive at Hendrick Motorsports in 2002.
— Jimmie Johnson (@JimmieJohnson) January 22, 2022
Since then, he’s gone on to take part in 686 races and has won 83 of them. Johnson is the driver with the 6th most number of wins in NASCAR history.
In a recent interview, he spoke about his early days and how he started his racing career. Contrary to what people believe, the 46-year old had a very difficult childhood. His parents, ‘gave it all’ to support him and his brother Jarit’s racing career, and had to make a number of sacrifices.
Jimmie Johnson and his brother Jarit never felt that they were short of money
Johnson spent his childhood living in a trailer park with his family. Despite them not making a lot of money, the Johnson brothers never felt that they lacked anything.
Their father Gary, and mother Catherine would have to run multiple jobs, to make sure that their children could pursue their racing careers.
“They spent every single dime on me and Jarit on racing. And they were paying plenty of hospital bills because I was accident-prone,” said Johnson.
He went on to talk about how his early racing days, and how his first motorsport ventures involved two-wheelers. “We had new bikes, we raced at the local track.”
“We raced the regional events. If we qualified for national events, we packed for the summer and drove our 1979 Econoline van with a 10-foot enclosed trailer behind it across the country.”