Jimmie Johnson to join Danica Patrick on Indy 500 coverage

NBC Sports announced today that Jimmie Johnson will join Mike Tirico and Danica Patrick for its studio coverage of the 105th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge.

Jimmie Johnson to join Danica Patrick on Indy 500 coverage

While for Tirico and Patrick it will be the third consecutive season in the commentary booth at the Memorial Day Weekend classic, it will be a first for seven-time NASCAR Cup champion Johnson.

Johnson ended his 83-win Cup career to join the Chip Ganassi Racing-Honda team this year, but is focused on road and street courses. The #48 car is taken over by 2004 IndyCar champion and 2013 Indy 500 winner Tony Kanaan for the oval races.

Johnson will serve as an analyst on race day and Qualifying weekend, working at the Peacock Pit Box alongside Steve Letarte, who will also be making his Indy 500 on-air debut. 

Their former Hendrick Motorsports colleague Dale Earnhardt Jr. will be part of the pre-race coverage, while Leigh Diffey, Townsend Bell and Paul Tracy will continue as the NTT IndyCar Series’ traditional commentators in calling the race itself. Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast and Kevin Lee will serve as pit reporters. 

Patrick, who became an Indy star back in 2005 after leading the race as a rookie – the first woman ever to lead the 500 – and qualifying and finishing fourth, stated: “It continues to be an honor to be a part of the Indy 500 NBC Sports team for the third year in a row alongside Mike Tirico. I look forward to the experience more every year.

“In fact, it’s similar to the way it felt driving – as time passes, the gravity of the event becomes greater. I felt it from the inside, and now I am feeling it from the outside. On a competitive note, what has been obvious so far this season is how many great young drivers there are. It will be fun to see how they stack up to the veterans on the big stage.”

Johnson said: “To say I am excited for May in Indianapolis is an understatement. This will be my first in-person Indianapolis 500 experience, and I absolutely cannot wait to take it all in. I’m really excited to be working alongside Mike Tirico, who is one of my favorite hosts, and sitting on the Peacock Pit Box with Steve Letarte will be so much fun, as we go way back.

“I’m so appreciative to NBC Sports for this opportunity and I’m ready to have some fun and hopefully make it fun for the fans watching at home.”

“We are thrilled to have Mike and Danica return as well as add Jimmie to our Indy 500 coverage this May,” said Sam Flood, Executive Producer and President, Production, NBC Sports & NBCSN. “Danica’s and Jimmie’s racing insights, along with Mike anchoring our broadcast from historic Indianapolis Motor Speedway, will add another gear to Leigh, Townsend, Paul and our pit reporters’ coverage of The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.”

Jac Collinsworth will host the pre-race coverage which will include analysis from Earnhardt Jr. and reports from around the track by Rutledge Wood.

Pre-race coverage begins on NBC at 11am ET, with the green flag dropping at 12:30pm ET.

NBC Sports and Peacock Premium will offer 55+ hours of coverage across the two-weeks of Indy 500-related activity including every practice session, qualifying, Carb Day and eight hours of race-day coverage from IMS.

shares
comments

Related video

Wickens back in racecar, drives BHA Hyundai at Mid-Ohio

Previous article

Wickens back in racecar, drives BHA Hyundai at Mid-Ohio

Next article

Stefan Wilson plans to apply lessons learned from Justin

Stefan Wilson plans to apply lessons learned from Justin
Load comments
Colton Herta – America's next racing hero Prime

Colton Herta – America's next racing hero

Last Sunday, Colton Herta demolished his IndyCar opposition in the second round of the season. David Malsher-Lopez explains why Andretti Autosport’s youngest ace bears all the hallmarks of becoming the country’s next homegrown motorsport hero.

IndyCar
Apr 29, 2021
How good is Palou and is he Dixon’s strongest title rival? Prime

How good is Palou and is he Dixon’s strongest title rival?

Last Sunday, Alex Palou delivered his first IndyCar victory on his Chip Ganassi Racing debut. Is the young Spaniard going to become his legendary teammate Scott Dixon’s biggest title threat? David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Apr 21, 2021
Preview: Why IndyCar in 2021 is too close to call Prime

Preview: Why IndyCar in 2021 is too close to call

The fight for supremacy in the NTT IndyCar Series will be as intense as ever. David Malsher-Lopez is your guide to the main contenders and six intriguing sub-plots.

IndyCar
Apr 15, 2021
Is Arrow McLaren SP ready for IndyCar’s title fight? Prime

Is Arrow McLaren SP ready for IndyCar’s title fight?

With Patricio O'Ward and Felix Rosenqvist leading its line-up, 2021 could be the year Arrow McLaren SP-Chevrolet joins the IndyCar elite, writes David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Feb 21, 2021
Dale Coyne picks the Top 10 drivers in his giant-slaying team Prime

Dale Coyne picks the Top 10 drivers in his giant-slaying team

Over 37 seasons, Dale Coyne has run no fewer than 80 Indy car drivers – including himself! Ahead of his first season running Romain Grosjean, we asked Coyne to pick the best 10 drivers ever to compete for him. By David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Feb 10, 2021
Why enigmatic Marco Andretti will be missed Prime

Why enigmatic Marco Andretti will be missed

Last Friday, Marco Andretti announced he is withdrawing from fulltime IndyCar racing. David Malsher-Lopez explains how this third-gen racer was a puzzle in the car, but a straight shooter off-track.

IndyCar
Jan 19, 2021
Why Roger Penske is an American motorsport icon Prime

Why Roger Penske is an American motorsport icon

In this exclusive one-on-one interview, Roger Penske reveals the inner drive that has made him not only a hugely successful team owner and businessman but also the owner of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and IndyCar. He spoke to David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Dec 28, 2020
Is the mighty McLaren M16 the greatest ever Indy car? Prime

Is the mighty McLaren M16 the greatest ever Indy car?

When founder Bruce McLaren died in June 1970, his team could have folded. Instead, his loyal band rallied to produce a string of winners - including an Indy car game-changer that won three Indy 500s in six years.

IndyCar
Dec 23, 2020