Former Sprint Cup Series crew chief and now Fox Sports analyst Larry McReynolds was asked how crucial a strong showing is this week at Charlotte Motor Speedway for six-time Cup champion Jimmie Johnson and his No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports team. Johnson has yet to register a victory this season.
Here is McReynolds' response:
"We see them stumbling a bit each week. We are one race away from being one-third of the way through the season, and when you see Jimmie Johnson and the No. 48 team run sixth in the All-Star Race at Charlotte without any true issues, it definitely raises concern. Johnson said on the radio that he feels like he’s trying to solve a puzzle every time he’s behind the wheel. That is so uncharacteristic of that team," he said.
"Five Hendrick-related teams have wins this year, while he sits winless. And of the Hendrick Motorsports cars in the All-Star Race, the No. 48 team probably was the weakest. These next three tracks – Charlotte, Dover and Pocono – where 16 or 17 of his 66 wins have come – will be very important for that team. If they haven’t won by then, then I think we can say something really is up with them."