Jimmie Johnson tests positive for COVID-19, will miss race in Indianapolis

FILE - In this Feb. 16, 2020 file photo Jimmie Johnson climbs intp his car before the NASCAR Daytona 500 auto race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. NASCAR seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson tested positive for COVID-19 and will not compete in Sunday’s race in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)
FILE - In this Feb. 16, 2020 file photo Jimmie Johnson climbs intp his car before the NASCAR Daytona 500 auto race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. NASCAR seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson tested positive for COVID-19 and will not compete in Sunday’s race in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)

Credit: John Raoux

Credit: John Raoux

Hendrick Motorsports announced Friday that NASCAR driver Jimmie Johnson has tested positive for COVID-19. He will miss Sunday’s race in Indianapolis as a result -- the first race he’s missed in his career.

"My first priority is the health and safety of my loved ones and my teammates," Johnson, who drives the No. 48 Chevrolet, said in a statement. "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."

Johnson, 44, was tested Friday after his wife, Chandra, tested positive for the disease. She had allergy-like symptoms, NASCAR.com reported. Johnson has not experienced COVID-19 symptoms, some of which include cough, fever and shortness of breath.

One member of Johnson’s crew has to self-quarantine due to close contact with him.

Jimmie Johnson competes in the NASCAR Cup Series auto race at Pocono Raceway, Sunday, June 28, 2020, in Long Pond, Pa. Johnson tested positive for COVID-19 and will miss the July 5 race in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Jimmie Johnson competes in the NASCAR Cup Series auto race at Pocono Raceway, Sunday, June 28, 2020, in Long Pond, Pa. Johnson tested positive for COVID-19 and will miss the July 5 race in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Credit: Matt Slocum

Credit: Matt Slocum

Justin Allgaier will drive on Sunday as Johnson’s replacement.

Johnson is the first NASCAR driver to confirm he has COVID-19, CBS Sports reported. The seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion was set to compete at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Sunday's race.

NASCAR said in a statement that for Johnson to return, he has to be symptom-free and have two negative COVID-19 tests at least 24 hours apart.

“NASCAR requires Johnson to be cleared by his physician before returning to racing,” the company said in a statement. “Jimmie is a true battle-tested champion, and we wish him well in his recovery. NASCAR has granted Jimmie a playoff waiver, and we look forward to his return as he races for an eighth NASCAR Cup Series championship.”

Johnson has previously said 2020 will be his last year as a full-time driver. He is currently 12th in the points standings.