The biggest Silly Season domino fell today as Johnson announced that he will not be returning to the open-wheel series for another full-time campaign. The seven-time NASCAR Cup champion did not rule out a return entirely, but that he is ready to “scale back” in 2023.

"I still very much have the desire to compete,” Johnson said. “But from a full-time standpoint and what’s required and the energy, effort, time away from home, I’m just not there right now. I just feel like I need to let the dust settle from the year."

After tackling the non-ovals in his first season in IndyCar in 2021, Johnson decided to go all-in this past year. He was a natural in the oval races, and qualified 12th in his Indianapolis 500 debut. He checked all of the boxes that he set out to for the year, but now feels that he is ready to move in a different direction.

"This was a difficult choice for me, but in my heart, I know it’s the right one. I’m not exactly sure what the next chapter holds, but if an opportunity comes along that makes sense, I will consider it. I still have a bucket list of racing events I would like to take part in."

The Indy 500 remains one of those events, as does the idea of returning to NASCAR for a race or two in the Cup series. Johnson loves the idea of doing "the double" and would have a decent shot of winning each race - the 500 at Indianapolis and Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte.

Johnson is a four-time Coke 600 winner. "You know me and endurance sports, and "the double" sounds awesome. I’ve always had this respect for the guys who have done it. I would say it is more of a respect thing than a bucket-list item, and I’d love to put some energy into that idea and see if I can pull it off." The last driver to attempt both races in the same day was Kurt Busch in 2014.

Aside from IndyCar, Johnson will likely pursue several other marquee events. Driving in the 24 Hours of Le Mans is the most appealing venture out there, as Jimmie has stated multiple times that he would love to be part of Hendrick Motorsports' special "Garage 56" entry. There are other IMSA Sportscar events that would also peak his interest.

Johnson told AP he would consider racing in the LMP2 category, and is even curious about the six-race World Endurance Championship. For now, the 47-year old expressed his gratitude for everyone that made his full IndyCar season truly memorable.

"Competing at this level in IndyCar has been such a great experience. I couldn’t have asked for a better team to race for than Chip Ganassi Racing. Everyone worked extremely hard for the last two seasons, pushing to get the best performances out of me every single week. The support from my crew and teammates went above and beyond anything I could have ever asked for. They have truly showed me that there are no finish lines in life. I have enjoyed every minute of these last two years."

Ganassi still plans to run four full-time cars this season, but would welcome Johnson back at Indy. "We are fully supportive of Jimmie. He has been a valued member of our team and if we can find a way to continue working together, we would like to do so."

The future Hall of Famer will be back in some form, as he is not quite ready to hang up his gloves entirely. "I really do anticipate racing somewhere next year. Thankfully, I do have options. This isn’t a goodbye. I’m going to find some new projects and continue to find new ways to challenge myself."