Jimmie Johnson short pits his way to victory at Atlanta Motor Speedway

Jimmie Johnson celebrates his win after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 28, 2016 in Hampton, Georgia.
Jimmie Johnson celebrates his win after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 28, 2016 in Hampton, Georgia.
Jimmie Johnson celebrates his win after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 28, 2016 in Hampton, Georgia.

A timely green flag pit stop from six-time champion Jimmie Johnson was the only thing anyone had for Kevin Harvick Sunday.  Johnson short pitted late in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway and was leading in the final laps. He then survived an overtime restart and won the 76th win of his career.

Johnson had a 13-second lead with 40 laps to go after the stop that gave him the only chance for a win.  Kevin Harvick who had been the class of the field and led the most laps, 131, tried to close the gap but was not gaining in the final circuits. That lead was erased however, when Ryan Newman lost a tire with three laps to go and spun bringing out only the races second caution.

After pit stops, Johnson led the field for the final overtime restart.  He was able to gain the advantage on the restart as Harvick slipped back form second after sliding his tires on the restart.  Johnson had a clear lead along the backstretch as behind the leaders a multicar crash erupted among Aric Almirola, Landon Cassill, and David Regan. Johnson took the white flag at the line, followed by the yellow that secured the victory.

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About Greg Engle 7420 Articles
Greg is a published award winning sportswriter who spent 23 years combined active and active reserve military service, much of that in and around the Special Operations community. Greg is the author of "The Nuts and Bolts of NASCAR: The Definitive Viewers' Guide to Big-Time Stock Car Auto Racing" and has been published in major publications across the country including the Los Angeles Times, the Cleveland Plain Dealer and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was also a contributor to Chicken Soup for the NASCAR Soul, published in 2010, and the Christmas edition in 2016. He wrote as the NASCAR, Formula 1, Auto Reviews and National Veterans Affairs Examiner for Examiner.com and has appeared on Fox News. He holds a BS degree in communications, a Masters degree in psychology and is currently a PhD candidate majoring in psychology. He is currently the weekend Motorsports Editor for Autoweek.