DOVER, Del. — Jimmie Johnson wore a helmet painted in tribute to boyhood race hero Cale Yarborough. He then went out and tied the Hall of Famer on NASCAR’s career wins list last year at Dover.

For Johnson, winning at Dover had become the norm – his 11 wins on the mile track are easily the record. His victory was already his third of the season and the hunt for a record eighth championship was roaring ahead.

Until it stalled.

He had just two top-10s over the next 12 races, fell out of title contention and never finished a race better than third. He opened this season by wrecking out of the Daytona 500 and has just one top-five in 10 races.

The 42-year-old Johnson is used to racking up the kind of milestones that have made him a surefire Hall of Famer. But his return to Dover marks a rather ignominious distinction – he’s riding the longest losing streak of his career at 33 races.

Is it over at Dover?

“We’ll get it close, and history shows that,” Johnson said. “Hopefully we get it perfect and we can have the day that we really want to have and get back to victory lane. But it does take a little pressure off me knowing that this is my best track and knowing that this is my favorite track.”

The Hendrick Motorsports driver swept Dover in 2002 and 2009 and won races in 2005, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2017. He also joined NASCAR Hall of Famers Richard Petty (Martinsville-15, North Wilkesboro-15, Richmond-13, Rockingham-11) and Darrell Waltrip (Bristol-12, Martinsville-11) as drivers to win 11 races at a single track.

XFINITY: Justin Allgaier won a $100,000 bonus by holding off teammate Elliott Sadler in a door-to-door race through the final turn at Dover International Speedway on Saturday to win the Xfinity Series race.

Sadler used lapped traffic to set up his attempt to snatch the lead from Allgaier and played it perfectly as he pulled alongside Allgaier. The two Chevrolets touched and Allgaier wiggled but held on for the victory.

He’s the 10th different Xfinity Series winner in 10 races this season. Dating to last year, a record 13 different drivers have won.

Allgaier collected the $100,000 bonus from series sponsor Xfinity with the victory. His first win of the season was also his first at the Delaware mile and came during a year in which he’d already finished second three times.

Authorities say a former NASCAR crew member broke the jaw of a team owner while they were arguing at Dover International Speedway. A news release from Dover police says 33-year-old Lawrence Hayden of Concord, North Carolina, and 56-year-old Xfinity Series race team owner Jerry Hataway were arguing over Hayden’s employment Friday when Hayden began punching Hataway.


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