For 25 years, some of the greatest drivers across all disciplines have traveled through the Turn 3 tunnel on their way into the hallowed grounds of Homestead-Miami Speedway. None greater, though, than Jimmie Johnson, a 7-time NASCAR Cup Series champion who claimed all of his titles at the South Florida track.
As NASCAR descends upon Homestead-Miami Speedway this weekend, it will be hard for anyone not to be aware of this fact. The tunnel, which sits off Palm Drive and also is the Southernmost tunnel in the continental United States, will permanently be renamed “Jimmie Johnson’s Southernmost Tunnel.” The artwork on the tunnel entrance will feature an image of Johnson and his seven NASCAR Cup Series trophies as well as his car number, 48. Johnson announced prior to the start of this season that 2020 will be his final one as a full-time driver in the NASCAR Cup Series.
“It’s such an incredible honor to have this tunnel renamed for me,” Johnson said. “It’s going to be weird not driving in there with that familiar pit in your stomach, as I have so many years in the past as we were in contention for championships. So many incredible memories were made at this track, I will always remember how special this place is to me.”
Johnson’s seven championships included a stretch of five straight years, from 2006-10, in addition to 2013 and 2016. That final title came in the current Championship 4 format when he took the checkered flag in the Ford EcoBoost 400.
“Jimmie Johnson embodies much of what Homestead-Miami Speedway has been about for the past 25 years,” said Homestead-Miami Speedway President Al Garcia. “He has given our fans an awful lot to cheer about in his 19 starts here, and he has been an exemplary champion in every way possible. His legacy at our track is unmatched by any individual at any sports venue, and this will ensure that his accomplishments here will always be remembered.”
The following is the complete schedule for the upcoming NASCAR weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway:
|DATE||EVENT||RACE TIME (ET)|
|Saturday, June 13||NASCAR Xfinity Series Hooters 250 (250 miles)||3:30 pm (FOX)|
|Saturday, June 13||NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series
Baptist Health 200 (201 miles)
|7:30 pm (FS1)|
|Sunday, June 14||NASCAR Xfinity Series (250 miles)*||12:00 noon (FS1)|
|Sunday, June 14||NASCAR Cup Series Dixie Vodka 400 (400 miles)||3:30 pm (FOX)|
*“Dash 4 Cash” race
About Homestead-Miami Speedway
Homestead-Miami Speedway has been open since 1995 following an initiative to spur economic recovery in the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew. The Speedway, which was founded by Miami businessman, racing enthusiast and philanthropist Ralph Sanchez, is a 650-acre facility that features a 1.5-mile oval and 2.21-mile road course. The Speedway hosts on-track events nearly 300 days per year and generates more than $301 million annually for the region. In 2019, NASCAR crowned champions in all three of its national series at Homestead-Miami Speedway during Ford Championship Weekendfor the 18th consecutive year (2002-19). Champions crowned at Homestead-Miami Speedway in 2019 were Kyle Busch (NASCAR Cup Series), Tyler Reddick (NASCAR Xfinity Series) and Matt Crafton (NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series). In 2020, Homestead-Miami Speedway commemorates its 25th anniversary in 2020, as it hosts four NASCAR races over two days – June 13-14 – capped by the running of the NASCAR Cup Series Dixie Vodka 400 on Sunday, June 14.