NASCAR’s Jimmie Johnson tests positive for Covid-19, will miss Sunday’s race

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DARLINGTON, SOUTH CAROLINA – SEPTEMBER 01: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Ally Throwback Chevrolet, walks on stage during driver intros for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway on September 01, 2019 in Darlington, South Carolina. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (CNN) — Seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson has tested positive for Covid-19 and will miss Sunday’s race in Indianapolis, according to his team, Hendrick Motorsports.

Johnson tested positive Friday afternoon after learning that his wife, Chandra, had tested positive, according to a news release.

In Johnson’s absence, Justin Allgaier will drive the No. 48 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE for Hendrick Motorsports on Sunday at the Big Machine Hand Sanitizer 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

“My first priority is the health and safety of my loved ones and my teammates,” Johnson said in the release. “I’ve never missed a race in my Cup career, but I know it’s going to be very hard to watch from the sidelines when I’m supposed to be out there competing. Although this situation is extremely disappointing, I’m going to come back ready to win races and put ourselves in playoff contention.”

The news comes weeks after NASCAR restarted its season on May 17. Other American sports have slowly followed, despite rapidly rising coronavirus cases in the US. Earlier this week, six players on the MLS team FC Dallas tested positive for Covid-19.

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