Seven NASCAR Drivers Appear On '100 Most Powerful Athletes' List

When it comes to NASCAR, Jimmie Johnson apparently dominates in the business world, too.

Johnson was the highest-ranked NASCAR driver on Businessweek.com's annual "Power 100" list, which ranks the 100 most powerful athletes in the United States.

Seven NASCAR drivers appeared on the list, but none were higher than Johnson at No. 23 (Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning was No. 1).

Jeff Gordon (No. 39) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (No. 42) also made the top 50, followed by Tony Stewart (No. 62), Denny Hamlin (No. 72), Kevin Harvick (No. 88) and Mark Martin (No. 96).

As a group, though, the drivers became less powerful overall. Of the five drivers who were ranked last year, four dropped on the list.

Three other drivers with NASCAR ties (Carl Edwards, Kyle Busch and Danica Patrick) were among the top 100 last year but weren't ranked at all this year.

There was some good news, however: Hamlin and Harvick appear on the list for the first time, and Earnhardt Jr. moved up three spots.

Here's how each driver fared:

  • Jimmie Johnson: 23rd, down from 21st last year
  • Jeff Gordon: 39th, down from 28th last year
  • Dale Earnhardt Jr.: 42nd, up from 45th last year
  • Tony Stewart: 62nd, down from 48th last year
  • Denny Hamlin: 72nd, unranked last year
  • Kevin Harvick: 88th, unranked last year
  • Mark Martin: 96th, down from 41st last year
  • Carl Edwards: Unranked, down from 67th last year
  • Kyle Busch: Unranked, down from 70th last year
  • Danica Patrick: Unranked, down from 88th last year.
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