Jimmie Johnson tells DCSD students to work hard for what they want in life



By Melissa Rollins, Editor, editor@newsandpress.net

The excitement was clear as twenty-six students from the Darlington County School District filed off the bus last Friday at Darlington Raceway. The students were able to visit the Lady in Black thanks to their dedication to reading.
Earlier this year, Darlington Raceway partnered with the Darlington County Library system, the TEACH Foundation, and South Carolina Future Minds to roll out the Summer Reading Program, even giving out free books to students in Lamar and Society Hill.

DCSD students in kindergarten through eighth grade were encouraged to read books and take the Accelerated Reader tests that go with them at their local library to earn points. Each grade has specific goals for points. The students from each grade that earned the most points got to visit the Track Too Tough To Tame.
The students visited the newly named Earnhardt Towers and created a special science project with the staff from ScienceSouth. Using items like old cds, soda bottle caps and pennies, students created unique ‘race cars’ before trying them out on a small track.

After their science projects were complete, the students got a visit from Jimmie Johnson, driver of the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevy SS.

Johnson answered a few questions from students, including how he gets his car (it is custom built for him at the Hendrick garage in Charlotte) and why Dale Jr. is retiring (He’s 42 and he decided it was time to do something else).
DCSD boardmember Connell Delaine asked Johnson to talk with the students about how determination helped him get to where he is and how that can also apply to them.

“For me, I knew at a young age that I wanted to race and it was really, really important for me to do everything around the house and school to allow that to happen,” Johnson said. “My sponsors and parents had requirements for my grades in school and I am so thankful that they did because it kept me motivated and focused on what my passion was.”

Johnson said that those requirements pushed him to keep his eye on the prize.

“In order for me to receive that opportunity to race, everything else had to be in-line and that taught me how to really work for things that I am passionate about and love to do,” Johnson said. “Great responsibilities come along with that and there were plenty of mistakes along the way but I think you learn more from your mistakes than you do from success so don’t be afraid of mistakes that are made. It only makes you stronger and helps you grow.”

Learning these lessons young, Johnson said, helped him even as an adult.

“In most cases, you need to out-work your competition in order to succeed so the work ethic you learn to overcome obstacles in school, to keep your grades up, to challenge yourself there, those lessons apply later in life.”

Author: mrollins

Share This Post On

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This
Posts Remaining