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Cover boy

Jimmie Johnson doesn’t go in for superstitions or curses or hexes. The five-time defending NASCAR champion now enters black-cat territory. He’s on the cover of Sports Illustrated. The magazine goes on sale today and it’s the second time he’s on the cover – the other in 2008 after his third title. This is only the 10th time the magazine has featured NASCAR nationally on the front of the magazine. Bill Elliott was the first NASCAR driver on the cover in 1985. Johnson, going for a sixth consecutive title, said Tuesday he was unaware of the so-called SI cover jinx. “There’s nothing to worry about. If I lose the championship it has nothing to do with being on the cover of a magazine,” he said at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. “It would mean we didn’t do our jobs, or we had some bad luck and didn’t win a race. It’s no concern. I didn’t realize there was a curse. I thought it was being on the cover of a video game, that was the curse.” – Associated Press