2014 Races [22+2] that Drive to End Hunger / AARP is scheduled to be the primary sponsor:
Daytona, Sprint Unlimited, 2/15
Daytona - 2/23
Auto Club - 3/23
Darlington - 4/12
Richmond - 4/26
Talladega - 5/4
Charlotte, All-Star race - 5/17
Charlotte - 5/25
Dover - 6/1
Pocono - 6/8
Michigan - 6/15
Kentucky - 6/28
New Hampshire - 7/13
Watkins Glen - 8/10
Bristol - 8/23
Richmond - 9/6, AARP - H.A.M.
Chicago - 9/14
New Hampshire - 9/21, AARP - H.A.M.
Dover - 9/28, AARP - H.A.M.
Kansas - 10/5
Charlotte - 10/11
Martinsville - 10/26
Texas - 11/2
Homestead - 11/16
2014 Races  that Axalta Coating Systems is scheduled to be the primary sponsor:
Las Vegas - 3/9
Bristol - 3/16
Martinsville - 3/30
Texas - 4/6, Texas A&M Engineering
Kansas - 5/10
Indy - 7/27
Pocono - 8/3, Maaco
Michigan - 8/17
Talladega - 10/19
Phoenix - 11/9, Radiant Red
2014 Races  that Pepsi is scheduled to be the primary sponsor:
Phoenix - 3/2, Pepsi Max
Daytona - 7/5, Pepsi Real Big Summer
2014 Races  that Panasonic Toughbook is scheduled to be the primary sponsor:
Sonoma - 6/22
Atlanta - 8/31
There is only ONE current race track the Sprint Cup Series races on that #24-Jeff Gordon has not won a Sprint Cup race at:
Kentucky 0 for 3 with a best finish of 5th in 2012
Gordon has won at 24 [23 active] of 25 tracks he has raced on including two not on the circuit any longer, North Wilkesboro and Rockingham.(11-17-2013)
Jeff Gordon vs. Dale Earnhardt Comparison: Atlanta 1992 - Daytona 2001, 258 races:
Gordon vs. Earnhardt
Wins: 52, 23
Top 5's: 129, 101
Top 10's: 166, 160
Ave Finish: 11.8, 10.8
Championships: 3, 2
Gordon and crew chiefs wins / championships:
Crew chief; Wins; Titles
Ray Evernham; 47; 3
Robbie Loomis; 23; 1
Steve Letarte; 12; 0
Alan Gustafson; 8; 0 (current)
Brian Whitesell; 2; 0
Total; 92, 4
There are THREE current race tracks the Sprint Cup Series races on that #24-Jeff Gordon has not won a Sprint Cup pole at:
Las Vegas Motor Speedway
Contract Status: Driver: Lifetime/2014; Primary Sponsors: Axalta 2016; AARP 2015; Crew Chief: 2014
What are Sprint Cup plans for Chase Elliott? In a Thursday interview on SiriusXM Satellite Radio's NASCAR channel, Hendrick Motorsports general manager Doug Duchardt said the team planned to field a car for Chase Elliott in a handful of Sprint Cup races next season under the guidance of Kenny Francis (who was promoted Wednesday from crew chief of the #5 to vehicle technical director by Hendrick). Duchardt didn't speculate further on the future for Elliott. The 18-year-old son of NASCAR Hall of Famer Bill Elliott will run the rebranded Xfinity Series next year for JRM. "We'll see what the right steps are for the future, but right now, we're just going to take 2015 and take a look at how things are progressing," Duchardt said. "It's like having a prospect in Triple A batting .380 and when's he going to come up to the club. I get it. But we'll work on that and see where that all heads. Right now, he'll run the NAPA Camaro in '15, and we'll run some Cup races and see where that leads us. I understand it's part of the fun and speculation of what could or should be done. I completely understand it. We're going to try to make sure we put him in the best position to be successful when he does come here full time."
Hendrick also has signed Jimmie Johnson through next season. At a Thursday event to announce more than $500,000 in education grants from his foundation, the six-time series champion indicated he hoped to have an extension soon and said he had been unaware of Kahne's deal. "That's good news for Kasey," he said. Asked if Elliott was in line for his #48, Johnson said with a laugh, "No. I think there's maybe somebody else in line to retire before I do."(USA Today)(11-21-2014)
Gustafson talks about decision to pit Gordon at Homestead: Crew chief Alan Gustafson said his mistake late in Sunday's race at Homestead-Miami Speedway cost #24-Jeff Gordon a chance to win. Gustafson discussed his late-race strategy Tuesday on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio's "The Morning Drive." Gustafson told Gordon not pit during a caution 19 laps from the finish. The move kept Gordon first but with most of the field taking tires, it left him at a disadvantage. During the next caution a few laps later, Gordon pitted from second to get four new tires. He didn't have time to recover. Gordon finished 10th despite leading a race-high 161 laps. So what happened?
"Really, the error was made, I stayed out when the majority of the field pitted and that put us in a bad situation," Gustafson said of the caution 19 laps from the finish. "Jeff felt like (on the following caution) we weren't in a very good position to succeed, so we made a decision to come pit. Really the first stop, when us and Denny (Hamlin) and ... a few other cars stayed out, that was the one that really hurt us. That's on me. It was a mistake I made. I tried to keep the track position. I felt like that was going to be the highest percentage decision and it ended up not being. That put us behind unfortunately. I think we had the best car. The team deserved to win the race. It was a bad decision from my part and I'm going to learn from it. It would be really easy for me to make a lot of excuses and say, 'Hey there's a lot of circumstances that play into it - and there are and it is a very tough thing to do - but that's my job and in that situation I feel like I didn't do it to the best of my capabilities."(MRN)(11-19-2014)
Gordon moves into 2nd in the all-time top-tens list: During his 22-year Sprint Cup career, #24-Jeff Gordon has collected 454 top-10s, which is now 2nd all-time in that statistical category, with Mark Martin (453) now in 3rd and 258 behind Richard Petty (712). Gordon has collected 23 this season, which is the series-best.(11-18-2014)
Hendrick Motorsports going for pole #200: This weekend, Hendrick Motorsports could reach a milestone. With one more Sprint Cup Series pole position, the organization will have earned 200 in its 30-year history. Currently, Hendrick Motorsports sits at 199 poles, with #24-Jeff Gordon and #48-Jimmie Johnson combining for three so far in the 2014 season.(HMS), HMS's last pole was when Gordon won the pole at Michigan in August (11-14-2014)
UPDATE: Jeff Gordon won the pole at Homestead, bring Hendrick Motorsports pole total to 200.(11-15-2014)
200 POLES Hendrick Motorsports First To Reach Century Mark ... TWICE:
1 - Hendrick recorded its first series pole with Geoff Bodine at Bristol Motor Speedway on Aug. 25, 1985
16 - The number of different Hendrick Motorsports drivers that have posted at least one pole
26 - The number of different tracks at which Hendrick posted a pole
40 - The number of wins from the pole (qualifying was canceled for two of the wins)
206.558 - The MPH of the fastest pole winning speed for a Hendrick driver - Jeff Gordon at Michigan on Aug. 17, 2014
1 Jeff Gordon 77
2 Jimmie Johnson 33
3 Geoff Bodine 22
4 Ken Schrader 17
5 Mark Martin 10
6 Tim Richmond 9
7 Terry Labonte 7
8 Dale Earnhardt Jr 6
9 Brian Vickers 4
10 Kasey Kahne 4
11 Ricky Rudd 4
12 Darrell Waltrip 2
13 Kyle Busch 2
14 Casey Mears 1
15 Greg Sacks 1
16 Ricky Craven 1
Gordon pole-less at Homestead: Although #24-Jeff Gordon ranks third all-time with 76 career pole positions, Homestead-Miami Speedway is one of four tracks where Gordon has yet to win a pole position. Kansas Speedway, Kentucky Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway are the other venues where Gordon has never won a pole position.(HMS)(11-14-2014)
UPDATE: with Gordon's pole at Homestead, he now has won a pole at all tracks he has ran but three: Kansas, Kentucky and Las Vegas.(11-15-2014)
Gordon and sponsor ring the bell at New York Stock Exchange: Axalta Coating Systems listed its IPO at the New York Stock Exchange Wednesday morning under the ticker symbol AXTA. The company's chairman and CEO Charlie Shaver rang the opening bell with four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion, Jeff Gordon. Axalta has the longest-running sponsor combination relationship in NASCAR history. Shaver says being a manufacturer of auto coatings makes it an auto-related stock play like TrueCar (TRUE) and Mobileye (MBLY), both of which have risen significantly since debuting this year (The Street)(11-12-2014)
Gordon ties Martin for 2nd all-time all-time top-tens: During his 22-year Sprint Cup career, #24-Jeff Gordon has collected 453 top-10s, tied for 2nd all-time in that statistical category, with Mark Martin (453) and 260 behind Richard Petty (712). Gordon has collected 22 this season, which is tied for the series-best.(11-11-2014)
Special Axalta scheme for Gordon at Phoenix UPDATE: Hendrick Motorsports driver Jeff Gordon will be behind the wheel of the fiery #24 Axalta Radiant Red Chevy this week at Phoenix. See images of the scheme/car on the #24 Team Schemes page.(11-6-2014)
UPDATE: The original Brilliant Flames design, created by Sam Bass, will sport a new look, as its painted in Radiant Red - Axalta' s Automotive Color of the Year 2015. The color was selected based on Axalta Coating System's Global Automotive Color Popularity Report, which includes research that shows a three percent increase in red cars in North America over the past year. Axalta Vice President Nigel Budden assisted Gordon in revealing the paint scheme this week at the Axalta Engineered for Speed booth at the SEMA 2014 automotive aftermarket trade show at the Las Vegas Convention Center. "Radiant Red is made from our Cromax Mosaic low VOC solvent basecoat line," said Budden. "We also used special high chroma technology, called Vermeera to help ensure that the paint's brilliance could be clearly seen on the track at Phoenix.(Finish First Marketing)(11-9-2014)
Gordon comments about Keselowski: #24-Jeff Gordon met with members of the media at Phoenix and discussed last week's post-race incident with Brad Keselowski, the transcript in part:
Q) LOOKING BACK TO LAST WEEK THE AFTER THE RACE INCIDENT. DOES THAT ESCALATE THE WAY IT DOES IF (KEVIN) HARVICK DOESN'T HELP YOU OUT?
Gordon: "Well, it escalates because Brad (Keselowski) didn't want to face the situation. Those pit crew guys were kind of in the middle of that. The thing that I feel terrible about is getting my guys involved with it. I feel like if we could have just had a face-to-face there would have been no incident. But Kevin (Harvick) played a role; there is no doubt about that. I didn't realize who it was at the time. I thought it was him, but it wasn't until I went back and saw it later on video and got a good chuckle out of that one that I realized what had happened. It certainly played a role. Let me address this. I think there is a little bit of misunderstanding. I have no issue with a guy being aggressive and making a bold move. If you win the race and the guy that you slam finishes third or fourth I will be the first one to stand up and say that was awesome, that was a great move. But when you don't win the race and you ruin a person's day then there are consequences that you are going to have to deal with. How you handle yourself after that is a part of that. To me if you are going to compare to the greats of this sport that have been aggressive over the years, you also have to compare how they handle themselves in those situations afterwards. The ones that I have had to deal with on that, they know how to not make enemies, they might not have a lot of friends out there, but they also don't have a lot of enemies. If they do they seem to find a way to patch that up fairly quickly."
Q) OBVIOUSLY YOU ARE STILL MAD ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED SO HOW DO YOU RACE BRAD (KESELOWSKI) GOING FORWARD?
Gordon: "I'm not mad about it. I'm ready to move on and focus on Phoenix. I race people the way they race me. If I am in a situation that I feel like I can make a bold move that I think is going to help me win the race and he stands in the way then I'm going to do the same thing that he did to me last week. The difference is if the same results happen how I'm going to deal with it afterwards and face him on that. So, my goal is to make sure that we have the fastest race car that we possibly can in qualifying, practice and the race. To go out there and win this race, that is our goal. I can't think about what may happen, what might not happen, how I'm going to approach each restart and all that stuff. You just don't know. But, I also know that the way I have raced over the years have gotten me here is that balance between aggressiveness and patience's and feeling like when it is worth taking the risk and when it's not worth it."
Q) WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FOR IN A SITUATION WHEN YOU APPROACH SOMEONE ON PIT ROAD LIKE YOU DID BRAD?
Gordon: "To be able to just have a conversation to discuss what their decision making process was at that time. Yes, it ruins your day; you want somebody to have a little bit of sympathy. Doesn't mean you have to take back what you did...it means you have to understand what it did for the other person. And that certainly is not the way that one was handled."
Q) SO JUST TO CLARIFY, NEITHER YOU NOR BRAD KESELOWSKI HAS REACHED OUT TO THE OTHER SINCE LAST SUNDAY?
Q) ARE THE MODERN DRIVERS JUST GETTING AWAY FROM SOME SORT OF 'CODE' OR WAY OF SHOWING REMORSE?
Gordon: "Well, I don't believe in the whole texting thing and calling. I like face-to-face. But there's a period of time that needs to go by before; sometimes you can do face-to-face. But typically, I want it to happen immediately on both sides. And then, if that doesn't occur, then I'd like to wait until the next weekend when I can see them face-to-face. Or, if I run into them somewhere, I don't know. But I'm not one to do the calling and texting. That's just not the way I believe it should be done. I can't speak for what other guys say and do and how they should do it."(Team Chevy)(11-8-2014)
Gordon one top-five from tying Martin for 2nd all-time: During his 22-year Sprint Cup career, #24-Jeff Gordon has collected 452 top-10s. Gordon is third all-time in that statistical category, one behind Mark Martin (453) and 260 behind Richard Petty (712). Gordon has collected 21 this season, which is tied for the series-best.(HMS)(11-7-2014)
HMS will pay fines for crew members: Hendrick Motorsports will pay the $185,000 in fines levied against six crew members for their role in a post-race fight at Texas between #24-Jeff Gordon and #2-Brad Keselowski. NASCAR fined and suspended four Hendrick team members, while the crew chiefs for Gordon and Kasey Kahne were also fined. Hendrick Motorsports general manager Doug Duchardt said Wednesday on Sirius XM that the organization would cover all the fines (ESPN/AP). Listen at SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.(11-5-2014)
Hendrick Motorsports Statement about penalties: Hendrick Motorsports will not appeal penalties announced Tuesday by NASCAR related to a post-race incident Sunday evening at Texas Motor Speedway. "With NASCAR's new Chase format, we're seeing an unprecedented level of intensity every single week," said Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports. "Emotions run high when you're racing for a championship, and that's exciting for our fans and everyone involved with the sport. But there's a line the competitors need to be cognizant of, and we understand that. "Jeff (Gordon) was rightfully fired up Sunday night, and it just reiterated to me how passionate he is and how much he wants to win. The No. 24 team is a group that works together and is loyal to one another. They have our full support as we go into these final two races." Team members involved in the incident will not be additionally sanctioned by Hendrick Motorsports.(HMS)(11-5-2014)
NASCAR penalizes crew members and crew chiefs: NASCAR has assessed penalties to crew members from the #5 and #24 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams for their involvement in post-race incidents on Nov. 2 at Texas Motor Speedway. In addition, the crew chiefs from those two teams also have been penalized.
Jeremy Fuller, a crew member with the #5 team, along with Dwayne Doucette and Jason Ingle, crew members with the #24 team, each have been fined $25,000 and suspended from NASCAR through the completion of the next six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship points races. All three were found to be in violation of:
" Section 12-1: Actions detrimental to stock car racing
" Section 12-4.9: Behavioral penalty - involved in a post-race physical altercation with a driver on pit road
Dean Mozingo, a crew member with the #24 team, has been fined $10,000 and suspended from NASCAR through the completion of the next three NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship points races. He was found to be in violation of:
" Section 12-1: Actions detrimental to stock car racing
" Section 12-4.9: Behavioral penalty - involved in a post-race physical altercation with another crew member on pit road
Kenny Francis, crew chief of the #5 team, and Alan Gustafson, crew chief of the #24 team, have each been fined $50,000 and placed on NASCAR probation through the completion of the next six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship points races. They were found to be in violation of:
" Section 9-4A: Crew chief assumes responsibility for the actions of his team members
" Section 12-1: Actions detrimental to stock car racing
" Section 12-4.9: Behavioral penalty
"While the intensity and emotions are high as we continue through the final rounds of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, the actions that we saw from several crew members Sunday following the race at Texas are unacceptable," said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR senior vice president, competition and racing development. "We reviewed the content that was available to us of the post-race incident along pit road, and identified several crew members who crossed the line with their actions, specifically punching others. We therefore have penalized four crew members as well as their crew chiefs, as they ultimately are responsible for members of their team per the NASCAR rule book," Pemberton continued. "A NASCAR championship is at stake, but we can't allow behavior that crosses the line to go unchecked, particularly when it puts others in harm's way."(NASCAR)(11-4-2014)
Gordon, Keselowski and Harvick comment on the 'brawl': #2-Brad Keselowski made a move on 1st the green-white-checkered finish at Texas Motor Speedway Sunday night, moving past #24-Jeff Gordon. Keselowski's move resulted in contact with Gordon causing a tire to go down, sending the #24 scraping the wall and to the pits, losing a lap. The move was not well received by Gordon, his team or Harvick and his team as both drivers took issue with Keselowski on pit road, resulting in a three-team brawl after the race.
Gordon's comments: "We drove down into Turn 1 and he just decided to body slam us and cut our left-rear tire. It ruined our night. It ruined our chances, ruined our night, might of even ruined our Chase hopes. It's just uncalled for. I had to show my displeasure. It got ugly down there, obviously, and you know that is alright. A lot of things are going to happen in the next couple of weeks."
IS THIS EMOTION THAT WE ARE SEEING FROM A LOT OF YOU GUYS A RESULT OF THIS NEW CHASE FORMAT?
"It's emotion that is a part of this Chase and this format as well as towards people that make dumb decisions. He has been making a lot of them lately. That is why people have been running after him and chasing him down. It's why his team has got to defend him over there because of what he does on the race track."
TAKE US THROUGH THE FINAL RESTART AND THE CONTACT. "We were sitting there on a little bit older tires. I spun the tires a little bit but got a pretty decent start. We went down into Turn 1 and I just wanted to get on the outside of the 48 and out of nowhere I just got slammed by the 2 and it cut my left-rear tire. He's just a (expletive). The way he races, I don't know how he's ever won a championship and I'm just sick and tired. That's why everyone is fighting him and running him down. Your emotions are high. That was a huge, huge race for us. We had the car and had the position. I'm so proud of my team and I'm proud of Jimmie Johnson for winning that race and not letting that little you-know-what win that race."
YOU PULLED ON THE PIT ROAD TO TALK TO TO BRAD (KESELOWSKI). WHAT WAS THAT CONVERSATION?
"There wasn't a conversation. You can't have a conversation with him. He gets himself in this position and he has to pay the consequences. I'm going to race him the same way he races me. That kind of stuff is just uncalled for and I'm not going to stand for it."
WHAT ARE THE CONSEQUENCES AS FAR AS YOU'RE CONCERNED? SHOULD NASCAR GET INVOLVED OR IS THIS BETWEEN YOU TWO?
"To them, I'm sure it's a racing incident. But to me, it's just a bunch of crap. The kid is just doing stuff way over his head. That's just uncalled for. You're racing for a win and a championship. You don't go slam someone and cut their left-rear tire. If that's what it takes, then no problem. We can do the same thing to him."
WHAT HAPPENED AT END OF RACE: "He cut my left rear tire. I went over there to talk to him."
YOU WEREN'T GOING TO BE DENIED TALKING TO HIM, DID YOU WANT TO SEND A MESSAGE TO HIM: "I wanted to do a lot more than that."
Keselowski's comments: "I am doing everything I can to win this championship racing at 100-percent and that is something I am not going to be ashamed for," Keselowski said, bloodied from pit road. If I was out there wrecking guys to do it, that would be one thing, but a little bit of rubbing is how this sport was created and probably how it should move forward. I don't mind getting raced that way and I don't mind racing that way. I got a little rub there at the end too from the 4 car and that was just good racing. I am proud of our effort but just wish I would have been able to make two more spots out of it. We were very close and will keep fighting the good fight."
Q) WHAT WAS YOUR VIEW OF THE CONTACT WITH JEFF GORDON?
"There was a hole and I went for it. It closed up and we bounced off each other and kept going. It was just a battle for the win."
KEVIN HARVICK CAME UP HERE ON PIT ROAD AND GAVE YOU A SHOVE AND THAT KIND OF SET EVERYTHING OFF DOWN HERE.
"Kevin likes everybody to fight for some reason. I came here to race, not to fight. I raced as hard as I could and these guys just didn't like it."
Harvick's comments: YOU HAD SOMETHING TO SAY TO (BRAD) KESELOWSKI WHAT WAS THAT?
"I mean if you are going to run into people all the time you are going to have to fight your own fight, so I helped him get into it."
TELL US ABOUT THE END OF YOUR RACE. "Yeah, you just try to do all you can do. Obviously it was no-holds barred there with the 2. He was in bulldoze mode. I'm proud of all my guys on our Budweiser team. We fought all day and put ourselves in position to win. A lot happened at the end of this race, and we were able to put ourselves back in the hunt."(Ford Racing / Team Chevy)(11-3-2014)
Gordon delivers millionth meal for Drive To End Hunger to 89-year-old race fan: As a four-time Sprint Cup champion and one of the most recognized and popular drivers in NASCAR, Jeff Gordon admits he "gets to do a lot of really cool things." On Thursday [Oct 23rd], Gordon was able to do another "really cool thing," but it was also extremely meaningful in the process, delivering the one millionth meal served by one of Gordon's key sponsors, the Drive To End Hunger. On his way to Martinsville Speedway, Gordon stopped by the house of 89-year-old Freida Evans, who lives not far from the speedway in Stoneville, NC. "It's opened my eyes so much to this cause and how many millions of people are dealing with hunger issues in America," Gordon said during Friday's weekly media availability at Martinsville. "Yesterday was definitely one of the highlights. A woman named Freida (Evans) ... relies on Meals on Wheels to deliver her meals every day. She's the classic story of individuals who need those meals desperately because she worked so hard to feed her family throughout her whole life and gave everything for them. And now, she relies on those meals. And it was pretty cool to be able to deliver that one-millionth meal for Meals on Wheels to her in the state of North Carolina." Gordon didn't just drop off the meal. He spent a significant amount of time talking and visiting with Evans, who confided she watched him race on TV this past Sunday at Talladega.(NBC Sports)(10-28-2014)
Gordon's driver's ed teacher killed in crash: A retired Indiana school principal who was #24-Jeff Gordon's driver's education teacher was killed with his wife in a Tennessee crash while returning from watching Gordon race at Matrinsville, VA. Officials say 78-year-old Larry Sparks and 77-year-old Jacqueline Sparks of Pittsboro, Indiana, died in Monday's crash. WBIR-TV reports their recreational vehicle went off Interstate 75 near Jellico, Tennessee, and ran into a tree. Larry Sparks was a teacher and principal at Tri-West High School near Indianapolis and his wife was a retired elementary teacher. District superintendent Rusty King tells WTHR-TV that Sparks loved telling people about being Gordon's driving instructor. Gordon posted Facebook messages saying he was saddened by Sparks' death.(Associated Press)(10-28-2014)
2015 team sponsorships coming together: Some top NASCAR Sprint Cup teams have sold their primary sponsorships for all of next season, but space remains on the cars of #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., #5-Kasey Kahne, Carl Edwards and #15-Clint Bowyer four months before the 2015 season begins. Among the teams that have sold all their primary sponsorship for next year are #24-Jeff Gordon, #48-Jimmie Johnson, #22-Joey Logano, #4-Kevin Harvick, #20-Matt Kenseth, #18-Kyle Busch and #11-Denny Hamlin. "It's certainly not easy finding a sponsor, but there was an abundant amount of interest in our sport and in our team," said Dave Alpern, chief marketing officer at Joe Gibbs Racing, which expands to four cars next season. Steve Newmark, president of Roush Fenway Racing, says that the three-car organization has fewer primary sponsorship openings then it did at this time a year ago. Ben Schlosser, chief marketing officer at Richard Childress Racing, says that his three-car organization also is ahead in selling sponsorships, noting some companies were willing to start negotiations earlier. "I think the climate is getting better," Newmark said. "It's not where we need to be, but I think the whole sport is doing a better job of marketing." Newmark credits more collaboration with NASCAR compared to when he arrived at Roush four years ago. Newmark also said that the team has made many changes to better serve sponsors. See more team-by team info at Motor Racing Network and check out the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Team / Driver Chart.(10-16-2014)
ESPN employees visit Hendrick Motorsports: Five years ago, Rich Feinberg - ESPN vice president, motorsports, production - came up with an idea. "At ESPN, we cover all sports, but it's a very stick-and-ball culture," Feinberg explained. So he brought a concept to ESPN management and eventually NASCAR management. Why not gather a group of ESPN employees and bring them inside the world of NASCAR? "By immersing people in it, they learn about it, they have a new respect for it, and when it comes down to working on it, they do better," he said. ESPN and NASCAR loved the idea, and for five years, Feinberg has hand-picked a group to make the trek to Hendrick Motorsports headquarters in Concord, North Carolina. In the 2014 version of the immersion program, that certainly proved true. In addition to NASCAR and Hendrick Motorsports employees, among the participants were SportsCenter anchors Jay Harris, Chris Hassel, Darren Haynes, Lisa Kerney and Jaymee Sire in addition to ESPN Radio host Freddie Coleman, executive producers Mike Shiffman and Andy Tennant, senior news editor Jodi Herbert and Director of Talent, Planning and Development Chris Duffy. Included in the immersion was an overview of the human performance element of the race teams, featuring a tour of the training field, gym and pit pad. At the pit pad, the group got a chance to take a shot at changing a tire, splitting into two teams racing against the clock for the win. After the competition, the group went on to tour the engine shop and the race shops for the #5, 24, 48 and 88 teams. Finally, the group got to take an exclusive tour of Hendrick Motorsports Owner Rick Hendrick's Heritage Center, featuring his extensive car collection. It was just part of their immersion, as the group later got the chance to take in the Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.(Hendrick Motorsports)(10-15-2014)
Gordon gets 450th top-10 of career: The victory at Dover was #24-Jeff Gordon's 450th top-10 finish during his 22-year Sprint Cup career. The driver of the #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevy is third all-time in that statistical category, three behind Mark Martin (453) and 262 behind Richard Petty (712). Gordon has collected a series-best 19 this season. Although Gordon ranks third all-time with 76 career pole positions, Kansas Speedway is one of four tracks where Gordon has yet to win a pole position. Homestead-Miami Speedway, Kentucky Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway are the other venues where Gordon has never won a pole position.(HMS)(10-1-2014)
Jeff Gordon wins at Dover: #24-Jeff Gordon won the AAA 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Dover International Speedway for his 4th win of the season, 5th at Dover, first at Dover since 2001 and and his 92nd career win. It is the 17th win at Dover for Hendrick Motorsports, the most for any team.
#2-Keselowski finished 2nd followed by #48-Johnson, #22-Logano, #20-Kenseth, #42-Larson, #78-Truex Jr., #31-Newman, #15-Bowyer and #18-Busch.
Pole winner #4-Harvick led 223 of 400 laps but had a valve stem come off the left front tire on lap 252, causing it to go flat, doing some damage to the splitter. Harvick finished 13th down one lap.
Advancing to Chase "Contender Round" are: #2-Keselowski, #22-Logano, #24-Gordon, #4-Harvick, #48-Johnson, #18-Busch, #88-Earnhardt Jr., #20-Kenseth, #31- Newman, #99-Edwards, #11-Hamlin & #5-Kahne.
Four drivers were eliminated from the Chase: #47-Allmendinger, #41-Busch, #16-Biffle and #43-Almirola.
There were only 10 lead changes among 7 drivers. There were 5 cautions for 23 yellow flag laps.
The average speed was 130.541mph.
See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Penalty Report (pdf) and Lap Summary Report (pdf).
See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Race & Points Report (pdf).(9-28-2014)
Gordon voted 3rd Quarter Driver of the Year: This year's Brickyard 400 winner, #24-Jeff Gordon, was named winner of the third-quarter Driver of the Year Award 2014. The four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion won the voting by an elite panel of American broadcasters and journalists. Gordon is also the first four-time Driver of the Year It was the 42-year-old Gordon's record fifth victory at NASCAR's annual stop at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The Indiana native also won the Pure Michigan 400 from the pole in the third quarter that ended at Atlanta Motor Speedway on August 31rst. "It's an honor to be recognized as the Driver of the Year 3rd Quarter, and it's been an incredible summer for this #24 team," said Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevy. Barry Schmoyer, President of the Driver of the Year Foundation, said, "I've had the pleasure of handing Jeff many trophies. His talent appears limitless."
In the voting Gordon, who drives for Hendrick Motorsports, had four first-place ballots and totaled 87 points according to the Driver of the Year points system. Will Power, who drove the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Dallara Chevrolet to win the IndyCar championship this year, took seven first-place votes and totaled 77 points. Scott Dixon, driver of the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Dallara Chevrolet was third with 47 points and one first-place vote. Donnie Schatz, who drives the Tony Stewart Racing sprint car in the World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series was fourth in the balloting with 33-points and two first place votes. Jason Line who drives the KB Racing Summit Racing Chevrolet Camaro Pro Stock car in the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series tied Schatz with 33-points and one first place ballot. Gordon won the overall Driver of the Year title in 1995, 1997, 1998 and 2001. "The team has really been performing at a high level, and anytime you win a Brickyard 400 it's extremely special, " added Gordon. A total of 16 drivers scored points in the second quarter voting. In its' 48th year, the Driver of the Year title is unique. A panel of 17 leading journalists and broadcasters from across the U.S. determines the winner. Two panelists didn't vote this time. In quarterly voting, points are awarded on a declining 9, 6, 4,3,2,1 basis. Gordon will receive a trophy and a Tissot wristwatch to be presented later.(DOTY)(9-24-2014)
Gordon will be only driver to compete in all New Hampshire races: With Jeff Burton not scheduled to participate in the NHMS event, #24-Jeff Gordon will become the only driver to compete in all 40 Sprint Cup races at the New Hampshire track provided he takes the green flag Sunday.(Hendrick Motorsports)(9-18-2014)
Special scheme for Gordon in three races: For the second year, Jeff Gordon will drive a specially designed #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevy at three races in September, which is Hunger Action Month. The design features an orange paint scheme with an orange ribbon and will debut Sept. 6 at Richmond. The special paint scheme will also appear on the #24 Chevy at New Hampshire on Sept. 21 and Dover on Sept. 28. During Hunger Action Month, AARP and AARP Foundation's Drive to End Hunger is asking everyone to do something to help the nearly 9 million older adults struggling to put food on the table. For more ideas on how to get involved, visit drivetoendhunger.org.(HMS), see images of the car on the #24 Team Schemes page.(9-3-2014)
Gordon to make 750th career start UPDATE: On Sunday at Atlanta Motor Speedway, #24-Jeff Gordon is scheduled to make his 750th career Sprint Cup Series start. Through 24 races in 2014, Gordon leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings, 27 markers ahead of Hendrick Motorsports teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. This weekend in Atlanta, Panasonic's Toughbook brand will be featured on the car's hood and quarter panels. The #24 Panasonic Toughbook Chevrolet SS debuted at Sonoma Raceway in June when Gordon piloted the car to a second-place finish. Panasonic will be featured as a primary sponsor of the #24 team in two Sprint Cup races annually and as an associate-level partner in all other events (HMS), see images of the scheme on the #24 Team Schemes page.(8-28-2014)
UPDATE: Making 750 starts in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series is quite an accomplishment in itself. Doing so without interruption is even more remarkable. #24-Jeff Gordon will make his 750th start at NASCAR's highest level in Sunday night's Oral-B USA 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Gordon hasn't missed a race since he took the green flag in Cup competition for the first time, in November 1992 at Atlanta. "It seems like just yesterday that it started right here, over 20 years ago," Gordon said. "I love this track, love racing here, so it's pretty cool to have 750 happening here." If Gordon's streak remains unbroken, he'll surpass Ricky Rudd's series-record 788 consecutive starts in the 28th race of 2015, at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.(NASCAR Wire Service)(8-31-2014)
Hendrick Motorsports tests at Martinsville...comments: Martinsville Speedway's position as the first race in the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the Sprint Cup has the track's most successful drivers understanding the importance of the Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500. #24-Jeff Gordon and #48-Jimmie Johnson, who lead all active drivers with eight Martinsville wins apiece, spent the past two days testing at the iconic half-mile speedway. The two were joined by their Hendrick Motorsports teammates, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. and #5-Kasey Kahne.
"You want to give yourself every opportunity to win at every race that's in the Chase to guarantee yourself moving forward," said Gordon. "We know that Martinsville is a great track for us. I think all of Hendrick Motorsports understands that we've had great success here and we have confidence here and we can run really well here, and it's important. It's in the Chase."
"We haven't tested here in a long, long time, so as a group we kind of sat in a room and raised our hands as to what tracks in the Chase we wanted to test at and the majority wanted to come to Martinsville," said Johnson. "We're not reinventing the wheel while we're here, but we're certainly learning a lot and are hopeful to strike when we come back in the Chase."
Some of Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s biggest wins have come on NASCAR's largest tracks. But it is the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series' shortest track ... Martinsville Speedway ... that is a sentimental favorite for Earnhardt. Part of that sentiment stems from Earnhardt's love for the roots of racing, and no track has deeper roots in NASCAR than Martinsville Speedway. And some of that sentiment comes from Earnhardt's great success on the half-mile oval. Earnhardt Jr. doesn't have a Martinsville win or one of the iconic grandfather clock trophies in his house, but his driver rating at Martinsville is consistently among the top two or three in the sport. He has 11 top-five finishes and 16 top-10 finishes on the difficult short-track and has finished second twice and third four times. While some drivers don't especially look forward to 500 laps on the tight confines of Martinsville Speedway, Earnhardt relishes the two trips a year to Martinsville.
"I just love short-track racing. I don't really like running into people, but I like rubbing," Earnhardt said during his lunch break Tuesday. "I can appreciate someone using the bumper to get a spot without really causing too much of a problem for the guy who gets moved out of the way. I can respect that because you have got to do that sometimes. I feel like you come to expect that at this particular track. Since we're all fighting to get around the bottom, you can only wait so long behind a guy before you have to get creative and get physical with the race car. I can take it as well as I can dish it. I do enjoy racing here. The success we have here just comes from a lot of testing, a lot of practice," said Earnhardt, who finished third in the STP 500 at Martinsville last spring. "When we first started racing here, I wasn't very good and I remember coming several times and testing the first couple of seasons I was in the Cup series and that seemed to get us in a good direction. We got some good balance on our cars and what we need to get a car around this place and keep the tires on it."(Martinsville Speedway)(8-29-2014)
Gordon wins at Michigan: #24-Jeff Gordon won the Pure Michigan 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway from the pole for his 3rd win of the season, 3rd win at Michigan, and 91st career win.
#4-Harvick finished 2nd followed by #22-Logano, #27-Menard, #88-Dale Earnhardt, Jr., #15-Boywer, #11-Hamlin, #2-Keselowski, #48-Jonhson, and #16-Biffle.
#14-Jeff Burton, filling in for Tony Stewart, suffered electrical issues and finished 37th.
#24-Gordon (3 wins) takes the points lead back, now 3 over #88-Earnhardt, Jr.
#24-Gordon also again leads the Chase Grid with 3 wins and now 1st in points followed by #88-Earnhardt, Jr. with 3 wins, 2nd in points.
There were 20 lead changes among 8 drivers. There were 8 cautions for 37 yellow flag laps.
The average speed was 141.788mph.
See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Michigan Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Michigan Penalty Report (pdf).
See UNOFFICIAL drivers championship points standings on the Unofficial Drivers Points Standings (pdf).
See the UNOFFICIAL owner points standings on the Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf).
3M partnering with Hendrick to sponsor Gordon UPDATE: 3M will join 11-time Sprint Cup Series champions Hendrick Motorsports beginning with the 2015 NASCAR season when it will become a primary sponsor of driver Jeff Gordon and his #24 Chevy SS team. The new relationship will feature 3M as a primary sponsor in 11 Sprint Cup races annually and as an associate-level partner in all other events. The agreement covers the 2015, 2016 and 2017 NASCAR seasons. All five of 3M's business units, which comprise more than $31 billion in annual sales, will use the sponsorship in consumer promotions, product launches and business-to-business opportunities. With more than 65 of its products used in the construction and maintenance of Sprint Cup Series race cars, 3M for decades has played a key role in the success of NASCAR teams. The company manufactures more than 80,000 different products and has been an official NASCAR partner across several categories since 1995.(Hendrick Motorsports)(8-12-2014)
UPDATE: The 3M decision now leaves Roush Fenway looking for sponsorship for Biffle, who recently signed a multiyear extension to remain with the team. "We're thankful for the 10-year relationship we've enjoyed with 3M that included some of Roush Fenway's most memorable victories," Roush Fenway President Steve Newmark said in a statement. "We have some exciting '15 partnership announcements for the No. 16 coming up in the next few weeks and look forward to sharing those soon."(Sporting News)
AND Greg Biffle tweeted Tuesday evening, "I am excited to announce our new sponsor in a few weeks!!! Wish we could do it now but you know how contracts are !!!".(8-13-2014)
3M partnering with Hendrick to sponsor Gordon: 3M will join 11-time Sprint Cup Series champions Hendrick Motorsports beginning with the 2015 NASCAR season when it will become a primary sponsor of driver Jeff Gordon and his #24 Chevy SS team. The new relationship will feature 3M as a primary sponsor in 11 Sprint Cup races annually and as an associate-level partner in all other events. The agreement covers the 2015, 2016 and 2017 NASCAR seasons. All five of 3M's business units, which comprise more than $31 billion in annual sales, will use the sponsorship in consumer promotions, product launches and business-to-business opportunities. With more than 65 of its products used in the construction and maintenance of Sprint Cup Series race cars, 3M for decades has played a key role in the success of NASCAR teams. The company manufactures more than 80,000 different products and has been an official NASCAR partner across several categories since 1995.(Hendrick Motorsports)(8-12-2014)
Drive to End Hunger extends sponsorship of Gordon UPDATE: AARP and AARP Foundation's nationwide campaign to address the problem of older adult hunger through the Drive to End Hunger program will return with 11-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champions Hendrick Motorsports in 2015 as a primary sponsor of driver Jeff Gordon and his #24 Chevy SS team. Through AARP's sponsorship of the #24 Chevy, the AARP Foundation's Drive to End Hunger program will be featured as a primary partner in 13 Sprint Cup races next season, including the 2015 Daytona 500, and on portions of the car as an associate sponsor in all other events. It will mark AARP's fifth year as a primary sponsor of the #24 team, which is unprecedented in NASCAR for a social cause. The priorities of Drive to End Hunger, which is supported through donations from individuals, corporations and other non-profits, are to raise awareness and funds to fight hunger among adults 50 and over and to provide short- and long-term solutions to the problem of older adult hunger.(Hendrick Motorsports)(8-8-2014)
UPDATE: Drive to End Hunger's sponsorship will decrease from 23 races this year to 13 next year. Gordon was asked Friday if there were other sponsors that would take the open races:
Gordon: "I can't say right now, but things are strong for us at Hendrick Motorsports right now. I think the last couple of years we have all been very stressed out about sponsorships and getting those deals done. Here recently a lot of positive good things have been happening. There is more to come." (Chevy PR)(8-9-2014)
Gordon attended White House dinner last week: From #24-Jeff Gordon's media availability Friday at Watkins Glen:
Q: Can you talk about the dinner in DC this week?
Gordon: "Yeah, I was very fortunate to get an invite. I think the work that we are doing in Rwanda [with the Jeff Gordon Foundation] had a big influence on that."It was great. I got an opportunity to shake hands and meet the president of Rwanda President Kagame. That was a first for me and it was important. What an incredible event just to be a part of Ingrid and I felt very fortunate to be there. It was great to see the President and Mrs. Obama for a short period of time. We even danced next to them on the dance floor which was probably one of the coolest things I think Ingrid and I have ever had the opportunity to do at the White House. That was pretty neat. It was really special. The President asked me to break dance. But unfortunately it wasn't the proper music playing and he also suggested right after that, it probably wasn't wise of me to do that with getting towards the end of our season. I agreed with him."(Chevy PR)(8-9-2014)
Chase Elliott could run some Cup races in 2015: Rick Hendrick's plan for NASCAR Nationwide Series phenom Chase Elliott evidently entails a few NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts next season, the champion car owner said Wednesday in an interview on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. The 18-year-old Elliott tops the Nationwide Series standings and leads all series regulars with three race victories. Dale Earnhardt Jr., co-owner of his JR Motorsports race team, has said that Elliott is likely to run another full season on NASCAR's No. 2 circuit next year. Hendrick, also a co-owner at JRM, sounded as if a few premier series starts will also be sprinkled into that mix. A test session in which Elliott tested the cars of Hendrick Motorsports champion drivers Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon convinced the team owner the youngster was ready, even before he took the Nationwide circuit by storm.
"We haven't arrived at a decision for sure, but I think you'll probably see him run a few races next year," Hendrick told the satellite radio network. "Before he ever won a Nationwide race, I watched him test Jimmie's car and Jeff's car at Nashville, and Jimmie and Jeff both commented to me, 'This kid is super smooth and super fast. He takes care of his equipment, and he doesn't get in a jam.' Although Hendrick currently fields four full-time cars, the maximum for one organization as allowed by NASCAR, rules do permit teams to run an additional vehicle on a limited slate for prospective rookie drivers.(NASCAR.com)(8-7-2014)
Gordon says his back is "not great": #24-Jeff Gordon spoke to the media Friday morning in Pocono:
YOU HAD BACK ISSUES EARLIER AT CHARLOTTE. HAVE THEY FLARED-UP AT ALL SINCE THEN? ALSO ON HAVING 90 CAREER WINS AND INCREASING THAT NUMBER
"I don't think my back is ever going to be the same after what happened at Charlotte. I don't know what exactly transpired there, but it's not the same. And I have to be much more careful. I'm just having to treat it more with ice and stem and be more careful and do more stretching. Is it going to flare-up again? It could. But I'm just trying to be more cautious with the things that I do that I feel like contribute to that. But, yeah, it's not great, that's for sure.(Chevy PR)(8-2-2014)
Maaco featured on the #24 at Pocono: On August 3, at Pocono Raceway, Maaco will serve as an associate sponsor of Jeff Gordon's #24 Chevy.(Lionel Racing), see an image of the scheme on the #24 Team Schemes page.(7-29-2014)
Gordon approaching some records: Starting with his Cup debut in the final race of the 1992 season, #24-Jeff Gordon hasn't missed a race in 22 years. At Indianapolis on Sunday, he started his 745th straight event. Assuming Gordon stays in the seat of the #24 Chevrolet in every race through the 2015 season, he will break Ricky Rudd's series-record 788 consecutive starts in the 28th race next year.
Gordon led 40 laps on Sunday, bringing his career total to 23,949, sixth most all-time. If he drives for two more seasons beyond the current one, he has a realistic shot at leading 25,000 laps, perhaps catching the next driver on the list, Pearson, who racked up 25,159 laps led. Richard Petty led the most with 51,380.(NASCAR Wire Service)(7-29-2014)
Jeff Gordon wins at Indianapolis: #24-Jeff Gordon won the Crown Royal Presents the John Wayne Walding 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for his 2nd win of the season. It is his 90th career win, only the third driver ever to win 90 career Cup races. It is the fifth win for Gordon at Indianapolis breaking a tie for Sprint Cup Series wins at Indy with #48-Johnson.
#18-Busch finished 2nd followed by #11-Hamlin, #20-Kenseth, #5-Kahne (led most laps with 70), #22-Logano, #42-Larson(best rookie), #4-Harvick (pole sitter), #88-Earnhardt Jr. and #3-Dillon.
Pole winner #4-Harvick led 12 laps and finished 8th.
#24-Gordon (2 wins) keeps the points lead after winning the race and adds to his lead points lead, up to 24 points over #88-Earnhardt Jr..
#2-Keselowski leads the Chase Grid with 3 wins and 3rd in points followed by #48-Johnson with 3 wins, 5th in points.
There were 15 lead changes among 9 drivers. There were 4 cautions for 16 yellow flag laps.
The average speed was 150.297mph.
See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Indianapolis Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Indianapolis Penalty Report (pdf).
See OFFICIAL race results & points standings on the Official Indianapolis Race & Points Report (pdf).(7-27-2014)
Harvick is most mentioned driver in first half of season: According to data compiled by Joyce Julius, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, and Jeff Gordon have accounted for the most driver mentions during NASCAR telecasts though Daytona this month:
#88-Dale Earnhardt, Jr......29.....0:26:21.....1,950
Statistics reflect all live race telecasts and replays of the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season through Daytona (Race #18).(Joyce Julius)(7-20-2014)
Gordon talks about the RTA, Morgan Shepherd: #24-Jeff Gordon was the guest of this week's NASCAR Teleconference and discussed many topics including the RTA and minimum speeds, the transcript in part:
Q. There was a lot of talk about the Joey Logano crash with Morgan Shepherd and a lot of discussion about minimum speeds and whatnot, and I think 10 years ago at Darlington you had an incident with Andy Hillenburg in which it was similar with a car struggling to kind of maintain minimum speed and you had a wreck. I was wondering do you have any thoughts on should NASCAR look at minimum speeds because I think that the pace was like 16 miles an hour faster than what the minimum speed was at New Hampshire, or are you comfortable with having cars that are running that slow on the track?
JEFF GORDON: "No, I'm not comfortable with that. I don't think they have any place out there if they're running that slow, whether you're a car that's had damage and you can't maintain the minimum speed, or is the minimum speed the proper speed. I think it probably needs to be raised up at certain tracks where there's not a lot of falloff in the tire, then I think that minimum speed probably needs to be adjusted. I don't know if that really contributed towards what happened with Morgan and Joey. The video doesn't show everything. You see Joey go by him. Obviously Morgan got loose and got into him.
The tricky thing about minimum speed at a place like New Hampshire, you've got cars all around the track. You've got a car that maybe can meet minimum speed in clean air, but they're really never in clean air because they're constantly getting passed or trying to make some room for the lap cars to go by. How do we truly measure minimum speed because if you do it every lap that they're getting passed by a faster car, I'm pretty sure they wouldn't make minimum speed, so I think NASCAR maybe looks at sometimes once they get into clean air are they making minimum speed, and at a place like New Hampshire or Martinsville, they're never in clean air, and I don't think they're ever going to make minimum speed. Those numbers are -- NASCAR has those, I don't. I know that week in and week out there are certain cars that you're passing very, very often that you're questioning whether or not they're making minimum speed or if the minimum speed is really at the right pace."
Q. What do you think about the owners forming the RTA? Do you see that as a positive or a negative, and if it's a positive, what are some things that you think they can accomplish?
JEFF GORDON: "Well, you know, I don't really see where things have changed a whole lot other than it's more official. They've been meeting for years to get together and communicate about where the sport is at, things that they can do to strengthen their teams, be more efficient. I think it's really just more of an official way to create that alliance, and I think it's a positive because our sport, in order for it to be strong, the teams need to be strong. They need to be profitable. They need to be able to do business, and it's turned into a big business, and it's constantly growing, and so I'm in support of it because if the teams are strong and more successful, then that's good for us that are part of the team and it's good for the sport, it's good for the fans, and so I think that this is definitely going to be something that we're all going to learn from and grow from, but I think it's something that definitely is only going to be good for the sport in general."
Q. I'm not using the word union, but would it be helpful to the drivers if they were organized in the same way the owners are attempting to be?
JEFF GORDON: :Well, I think the way I look at this, this is a team alliance. It's not an owner alliance. Some people are saying that, but to me it's what's going to make the teams more efficient, stronger, more profitable, and to me that includes the drivers. That includes all the employees on each of those teams. I think that it's in a lot of ways covering us, as well. We're aligned with the teams. I have a contract with a team and I want that team to be strong because I know if that team is strong, then that secures my position as a driver. It secures our sponsors and only helps us with our partners and our fans."
(Team Chevy), see full transcript at Jeffgorodon.com and see a video of the interview at ESPN.com.(7-15-2014)
Sprint Cup teams form Race Team Alliance UPDATE: A group of nine multi-car teams participating in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) announced today they have formed a collaborative business association called the Race Team Alliance (RTA). The purpose of the organization is to create an open forum for the teams to explore areas of common interest and to work collaboratively on initiatives to help preserve, promote, and grow the sport of stock car racing. The organization intends to open up its membership to all full time NSCS teams in the very near future. In providing a vehicle for the teams to work together, the organization creates for the first time a single entity to engage with stakeholders on creative ways to market and experience the power of the sport's teams and drivers. As part of its focus, the RTA also plans to explore innovative ways to harness the combined purchasing power and scale of the teams' operations to drive efficiencies in costs. Rob Kauffman, co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing, has been elected the first chair of the RTA.
"With the encouragement of NASCAR and the manufacturers, the teams have met in various forms and forums over the years to explore areas of common interest. This simply formalizes what was an informal group." said Kauffman. "The key word is 'Collaboration'. We all have vested interests in the success and popularity of stock car racing. By working together and speaking with a single voice, it should be a simpler and smoother process to work with current and potential groups involved with the sport. Whether it be looking for industry-wide travel partners or collaborating on technical issues - the idea is to work together to increase revenue, spend more efficiently, and deliver more value to our partners."
The following teams are the executive members of the RTA: Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates, Hendrick Motor Sports, Joe Gibbs Racing, Michael Waltrip Racing, Richard Childress Racing, Richard Petty Motor Sports, Roush Fenway Racing, Stewart-Haas Racing and Team Penske.(RTA)(7-7-2014)
UPDATE: Statement from NASCAR: "We are aware of the alliance concept the team owners have announced, but have very few specifics on its structure or purpose. It is apparently still in development and we're still learning about the details so it would be inappropriate to comment right now. NASCAR's mission, as it has always been, is to create a fair playing field where anyone can come and compete. Our job is to support and strengthen all of the teams, large and small, across all of our series and we'll continue to do that. NASCAR is a unique community with hundreds of stakeholders. They all have a voice and always will."(NASCAR)(7-7-2014)
Special Pepsi scheme for Gordon: This Saturday night at Daytona, Gordon will drive the #24 Pepsi REAL. BIG. SUMMER. Chevy SS. Pepsi will be listening on Twitter to #RealBigSummer, surprising lucky fans with VIP access and experiences. Fans will have a chance to win more than 400 unique prizes taking them to the biggest ballparks, concert venues, festivals and more throughout the season. Real. Big. Summer. is all about taking ordinary summer pastimes and transforming them into truly epic experiences in ways that are only possible with Pepsi. Real. Big. Summer. is also celebrating the launch of Pepsi's newest products; Pepsi-Cola Made With Real Sugar and two Made With Real Sugar flavors available for a limited time - Pepsi Vanilla and Pepsi Wild Cherry. Pepsi Made With Real Sugar is available now across the United States and is also being supported by national ads.(Hendrick Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #24 team paint schemes page.(7-3-2014)
Gordon still winless at Kentucky: There are 23 race tracks on the current NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule; Jeff Gordon has a win - or eight - at 22 of them. His only hole is Kentucky Speedway, and it's an understandable one. The series has raced there just three times, all won by different winners. Gordon has fared fairly well in those three events, collecting three top 10s, including a fifth-place finish in 2012. If he were to win on Saturday night, he'd be the first driver in NASCAR history to win at every track on the active schedule. For the record, Gordon's win list includes Rockingham, which hosted its last NASCAR Sprint Cup race in 2004 [and North Wilkesboro where Sprint Cup last raced in 1996].(NASCAR Wire Service)(6-27-2014)
Latest on Jeff Gordon's back: #24-Jeff Gordon met with members of the media at Sonoma Raceway and discussed many subjects, including his back. The transcript in part:
Q) HOW IS YOUR BACK NOW? HAVE YOU HAD TO DO ANYTHING SINCE CHARLOTTE THAT YOU DON'T NORMALLY DO TO MAINTAIN IT?
Gordon: "Since that incident in Charlotte, of course I had the cortisone shots - that was the biggest difference in things that I hadn't had to do before. Then there was waiting for that to wear off to see what happens. In between that, I'm just doing a lot of ice, some TENS, the stimulation - the electric stimulation, and then my normal stretching and exercise routine that I always do. Just trying not to push it too hard. I've really gotten into bike riding this year, and was in great shape right before that happened in Charlotte. I've had to stay off the bike, but I'm looking forward to getting back on it. It feels pretty good out here. I'm happy as hard as you are braking, and all the shifting you are doing out here, I was a little concerned, but it has gone really well. The plane ride out was harder than anything, sitting there for five, six hours."(Team Chevy)(6-21-2014)
Hendrick Motorsports stretches win streak to five races: #48-Jimmie Johnson's performance at Michigan marked Hendrick Motorsports' fifth consecutive points-paying Sprint Cup win of 2014. #24-Jeff Gordon kicked off the current streak with his Kansas victory on May 10, which was followed by Johnson winning on May 25 at Charlotte and June 1 at Dover. #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. kept the trend going with his first-place finish at Pocono Raceway on June 8. It is the third time Hendrick Motorsports teams have combined to win at least five consecutive points races, including the 2007 Sprint Cup season when the organization posted separate win streaks of five races and a NASCAR modern era (1972-present) record of six races. The all-time NASCAR record of 16 consecutive Cup-level points victories was recorded in 1956 by car owner Carl Kiekhaefer with a combination of four different drivers.(HMS)(6-18-2014)
New primary sponsor for Gordon? UPDATE2: hearing that Panasonic, an associated sponsor / partner of Hendrick Motorsports will be the primary sponsor at Sonoma Raceway in June and/or New Hampshire in July. Supposedly the car will be blue and white and feature the Panasonic Toughbook mobile computers. Other races that no sponsor has been listed include Atlanta in August and Dover in Sept.(6-10-2014)
UPDATE: on the Sonoma Raceway entry list, #24-Jeff Gordon's sponsor is listed as Panasonic.(6-17-2014)
UPDATE2: Panasonic has expanded its relationship with Hendrick Motorsports with a new multi-year agreement that includes primary sponsorship of the #24 team of four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion and current points leader Jeff Gordon. Panasonic will be featured as a primary sponsor of the #24 team in two Sprint Cup races annually and as an associate-level partner in all other events. It will mark the first on-car branding for Panasonic since joining Hendrick Motorsports as a technology partner in 2007. The agreement covers the 2014, 2015 and 2016 NASCAR seasons. Gordon's #24 Panasonic Chevrolet SS will debut this weekend at California's Sonoma Raceway and will again appear Aug. 31 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Panasonic's Toughbook brand will be featured on the car's quarter panels at Sonoma.
"To maximize the value of a NASCAR sponsorship, you need to partner with proven teams and drivers that exemplify your brand," said Rance Poehler, president, Panasonic System Communications Company of North America. "Hendrick Motorsports and Jeff Gordon have a record of excellence that is a perfect fit for Panasonic and its Toughbook brand. We've been a technology partner of Hendrick Motorsports for many years, and as our business evolves to solutions and deeper partnerships with our customers, it is an excellent time to extend our relationship from behind the scenes to the car on the track."
Panasonic will leverage the partnership to promote technology solutions and products for business. Hendrick Motorsports currently utilizes Panasonic technology throughout its Concord facility, including cameras, electronic displays, televisions, digital signage, Toughbook computers and projection units. The team also uses Panasonic's professional video products to support its in-house video production capabilities.
"Panasonic has a combination of world-class people and products," said Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports. "We use their technology across the organization, and it provides the best possible tools in every area, from competition to marketing to IT. To have them see more opportunities for their business and want to grow the relationship sends a very positive message." All brand and company/product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of the respective companies. All specifications are subject to change without notice. Information on Panasonic solutions for business can be obtained by calling 877-803-8492 or at us.panasonic.com/business-solutions.(HMS), see images of the scheme on the #24 Team Schemes page.(6-17-2014)
Foyt would consider giving Tony Stewart or Jeff Gordon shot at Indy 500: Legendary IndyCar driver and owner A.J. Foyt was impressed with NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Kurt Busch's performance in the Indianapolis 500 a week ago. Foyt wouldn't mind having Sprint Cup stars Tony Stewart or Jeff Gordon driving for him next year at Indy. "If he wanted to, yes he could do a good job at Indy and if he wanted to, I'd consider it," said Foyt of having Jeff Gordon compete for him in the Indy 500. "Tony too. I gave Tony his first Indy ride in testing. Definitely I would (consider giving them a seat) because I know they could do the job." Foyt was speaking on the sidelines of the Detroit Grand Prix on Sunday. Foyt said it would cost approximately $1 million for a second car to compete at Indy during the month of May.(Detroit News)(6-5-2014)
Gordon's back better this weekend: #24-Jeff Gordon had to cut happy hour short at Charlotte last week and had Regan Smith on standby during the race because of back spasms. He updated the media on the issue Friday at Dover:
COULD YOU UPDATE US ON YOUR BACK AND HOW YOU ARE FEELING? REGAN SMITH SAID HE WASN'T ON STANDBY, SO ARE WE TO ASSUME YOU DON'T HAVE TO TAKE THAT MEASURE THAT WEEK?
Gordon: "I wouldn't say I'm 100%. I'm back closer to normal, which is just always aggravation and some discomfort. I'm still feeling some of the affects of what went on last week, but I felt good in the car. I didn't have any sharp pains, so that's good. I just had a week of rest and normal activity. Lots of ice this week. I was pretty sore on Monday and Tuesday after that long 600, but that's not totally unusual; but probably just a little bit more than normal because of all that I went through. So, I feel good for this weekend.
LAST WEEK, DID YOU HAVE ANY PHYSICAL THERAPY FOR YOUR BACK? AND HAS THIS MAKE YOU THINK ANY MORE ABOUT RETIREMENT?
"The issues that I've had in the past never really were like what I dealt with last weekend. That's the first time that something like that happened in the car, on qualifying day, into a race weekend. I've rolled out of bed and had things like that happen, and that's just being tight and just not having the muscles with blood flow and being loose, and that's part of just getting older. So, it was a little bit foreign to me to have that and that's why I had to get out of the car. The treatment that I had was I had an epidural as well as another type of injection. I don't know what they call it. It's some type of Cortisone that's fairly typical and common. I don't know all the different stuff that was in there that made the pain go away and helped more of the inflammation, is I think what they were trying to accomplish. So, that's the first time I've ever had to do that on a race weekend. I've done that before on a different part of my back that didn't really do much for me. This one luckily did. I think that it really more pointed toward some things that I have to address throughout a race weekend and how I handle the downtime. I've been working a lot harder on my training and riding a bike and exercising and the problem with that is that it tightens everything up even more so than normal. If I don't stay loose and ice and do other things that keep me loose when I get to the race weekend, what happened could possible occur again. So, that's the biggest thing I'm focused on; not thinking or focusing on anything else. I can tell you if that happens many more times, I won't have a choice (regarding retirement)."(Chevy PR)(5-31-2014)
Back spasms derail Gordon's practice time UPDATE2: during FoxSports1 coverage of Coca Cola 600 practice on Saturday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, #24-Jeff Gordon said back spasms flared up and he only ran 11 laps in the first practice on Saturday. Gordon said he would sit out Happy Hour practice and that Regan Smith would stand-by during the race on Sunday in case needed to sub for Gordon.
UPDATE: from a Team Chevy press release / transcript: #24-Jeff Gordon will sit-out second NASCAR Sprint Cup practice session today (Saturday) due to back issue.
Q) NORMALLY WE WOULD ASK ABOUT YOUR RACE CAR. BUT INSTEAD, HOW ARE YOU?
Gordon: "Yeah, unfortunately I had a back spasm the other night in that last qualifying run that I made. And I've been trying to get it worked out by today, and I got in the car and it just wasn't. The good news is that the car is awesome. So, I made 11 laps and it was everything I could do to do that. I just had to tell the team that I think it would be best if I sit out the rest of the day so that I can be prepared for this long, tough race that's going to happen tomorrow."
Q) WHAT IS THE PLAN FOR THE 1:00 PM PRACTICE? WILL THERE BE A SUBSTITUTE DRIVER OR WILL THEY JUST LEAVE THE CAR THE WAY IT IS?
Gordon: "Well, at this point we're going to have Regan Smith standing by for tomorrow. But I don't think they're going to do anything more today. Again, luckily we had a good 11 laps there (in first practice session) and we've got our teammates and information that we're going to be able to gather from them. It's all coming together very fast right now. It's unfortunate. I've had some spasms in the past, but this one it a little bit different. And so, I just want to really be cautious and take care of it. It doesn't do me any good to be in the car right now; especially when the car is as good as it is. It's really about getting prepared for 600 miles tomorrow. I have no doubts that I can be in this car and be competitive tomorrow if I just take it easy over the next 24 hours."(Team Chevy)(5-24-2014)
UPDATE2: Gordon told Motor Racing Network after the drivers meeting Sunday: "I think we should be arlight. I'm not 100%, but I feel a lot better than I did yesterday. I've got a good team on the race track preparing a great car and off the track as well that did a nice job getting me ready. If I get in there, I don't think I'll be getting out. We'll see what happens. I feel good enough to do it right now.'' Regan Smith will be Gordon's standby driver today.(MRN)(5-25-2014)
Warner Bros/DC Entertainment join forces with Hendrick Motorsports: Warner Bros. Consumer Products (WBCP), in conjunction with DC Entertainment (DCE), has joined forces with Hendrick Motorsports in a unique three-year agreement that will allow the team and its partners to develop consumer promotions and original content to engage youth, drive fan excitement and energize licensed merchandise initiatives. WBCP and DCE will work with Hendrick Motorsports and its partners to build on- and off-track programs teaming drivers #5-Kasey Kahne, #24-Jeff Gordon, #48-Jimmie Johnson and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. with the most recognized characters in Super Hero lore, including Batman, Superman, The Flash and Green Lantern.
Potential programs include co-developed car paint schemes, comic books and digital content incorporating DC Comics Super Heroes and illustrated likenesses of Hendrick Motorsports drivers. Team partners will have exclusive opportunities to align with upcoming Warner Bros. Consumer Products and DC Comics-inspired programming and releases.
The first joint program will come to life around upcoming Sprint Cup events at Charlotte Motor Speedway (May 25) and Michigan International Speedway (June 15) where Superman, the world's first and most recognized Super Hero, will be featured on Earnhardt's #88 Chevy. The Superman-themed paint scheme will pair the Army National Guard with the Superman Hall of Heroes, a new online gift-giving portal that empowers consumers to honor their personal heroes; those who have made a positive impact on their lives or the lives of others. The #88 National Guard/Superman Chevrolet SS will be unveiled May 21. Fans can learn more by following Hendrick Motorsports on Facebook and Twitter.(Hendrick Motorsports)(5-15-2014)
Gordon wins at Kansas: #24-Jeff Gordon won the 5-hour Energy 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway for his 1st win of 2014, 3rd at Kansas, and his 89th career win.
Pole sitter #4-Harvick finished 2nd followed by #5-Kahne, #22-Logano, #88-Earnhardt, Jr., #99-Edwards, #10-Patrick [her career best finish], #43-Almirola, #48-Johnson, and #20-Kenseth.
#24-Gordon, who came into the race as the points leader, extended his points lead to 15 over #20-Kenseth.
The race started about 35 minutes late after storms moved just north of the track, causing NASCAR to go into a holding pattern.
#22-Logano leads the Chase Seeding with two wins. #4-Harvick is second, also with 2 wins, but lower in points. They are followed by #24-Gordon, #18-Busch, and #88-Earnhardt, Jr.
There were 25 lead changes among 10 drivers and there were 8 cautions for 47 yellow flag laps.
The average speed was 128.149mph.
See unofficial race results, awards, money won, laps led, cautions and more on the Unofficial Kansas Race Results page (pdf) and check out the Kansas Penalty Report (pdf).
See the UNOFFICIAL owner points standings on the Unofficial Owners Points Standings page (pdf).(5-10-2014)
Hendrick pit coach is leaving for a job outside of racing UPDATES: One of the best pit coaches in NASCAR is leaving racing for work outside of the sport. As of Darlington two weeks ago, Hendrick Motor Sports pit coach Lance Munksgard will no longer be at HMS. Munksgard will be taking a new job in McGregor, Texas at Fourseventy Claim Management. Pit Talks talked with Coach Munksgard, he had this to say. "I was blessed to have been able to live a dream of working with the best mechanics and pit crew members in NASCAR over the years which was an unforgettable experience. I couldn't have asked for a better organization than HMS to finish my NASCAR career. HMS is a truly professional company that starts from Mr. Hendrick down through the management, crew chiefs, and through the pit crews. It was a true pleasure to work with a strong coaching staff and pit crew members at HMS and watch them progress each week. I will truly miss the competition on pit road each week and wish all the guys on pit road the best of luck."(Pit Talks)(4-21-2014)
UPDATE: Greg Morin, who has been pit crew coach for the teams of Kasey Kahne and Jeff Gordon, and Chris Krieg, the assistant coach to Munksgard, will oversee the pit crews for Earnhardt and Johnson until a full-time replacement is hired.(MRN)(4-22-2014)
UPDATE 2: Greg Morin and Chris Krieg were the 2 assistants for the #48/#88 pit crews will now be sharing duties until a replacement is hired for Munksgard. The #5/#24 pit coaches will remain the same.(4-23-2014)
Hendrick pit coach is leaving for a job outside of racing: One of the best pit coaches in NASCAR is leaving racing for work outside of the sport. As of Darlington two weeks ago, Hendrick Motor Sports pit coach Lance Munksgard will no longer be at HMS. Munksgard will be taking a new job in McGregor, Texas at Fourseventy Claim Management. Pit Talks talked with Coach Munksgard, he had this to say. "I was blessed to have been able to live a dream of working with the best mechanics and pit crew members in NASCAR over the years which was an unforgettable experience. I couldn't have asked for a better organization than HMS to finish my NASCAR career. HMS is a truly professional company that starts from Mr. Hendrick down through the management, crew chiefs, and through the pit crews. It was a true pleasure to work with a strong coaching staff and pit crew members at HMS and watch them progress each week. I will truly miss the competition on pit road each week and wish all the guys on pit road the best of luck."(Pit Talks)(4-21-2014)
Gordon could race 10 more years? Daughter may race soon: #24-Jeff Gordon talked to Larry King at Auto Club Speedway last month about his strong season in 2014, his career and whether his children will race. "It's funny how life serves these things up," Gordon said. "You go through a time where you go through a frustrating year, or I had some back and health issues. And I said, 'You know, I don't know how much longer I'm going to be able to do this at this level or if I event want to.' "Then you all of the sudden have this amazing year, and you go, 'God, I love racing. Racing's amazing. I can't wait to do it for another 10 years.' " In addition to his own future, Gordon also discusses the possibility of his offspring racing and expects to see his daughter behind the wheel in the near future. "We're probably going to put my daughter in a quarter-midget soon," Gordon said.(see video at NASCAR.com), on Monday, April 14th, Gordon posted an image on his Twitter of daughter Ella driving a quarter midget for the first time.(4-15-2014)
Jeff Gordon Treatment Room Opens at Children's Blood & Cancer Center at Dell Children's Medical Center: Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation (JGCF) is pleased to announce the dedication of the newly redesigned Jeff Gordon treatment room at the Children's Blood and Cancer Center (CBCC) located in Austin, Texas. CBCC is part of the Dell Children's Medical Center of Central Texas -- the only dedicated, free-standing pediatric facility serving the healthcare needs of children in the 46 county Central Texas region and beyond. The Jeff Gordon treatment room -- themed winning through teamwork -- features custom graphics created by Red Eye Designs of Charlotte, NC, depicting Gordon's #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS making a pit stop at last month's race in Las Vegas. The room was repainted in a complementary color matching the iconic flame design on Gordon's car while the cabinetry features specially designed graphics that replicate the tool boxes used by the No. 24 team. The funds to sponsor the room were raised by the Austin Chapter of the JGCF Promise Circle with a significant contribution made by the Austin office of CBRE Group, Inc., a global leader in real estate services. The Promise Circle is comprised of a group of dedicated volunteers who work in their communities with leading cancer treatment centers, and their mission is to serve as advocates for children with cancer and to provide support services to these children and their families. The Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation has contributed more than $14 million to support children battling cancer and invests in research, provides access to treatment and offers patient support programs.(JeffGordon.com)(4-5-2014)
"Aggie Brilliance" paint scheme for Gordon at Texas: To celebrate a new partnership between Axalta Engineering and Texas A&M College of Engineering, Jeff Gordon's #24 Chevy will feature a special "Aggie Brilliance" paint scheme during this weekend's event at Texas Motor Speedway (HMS), see images of the scheme on the #24 Team Schemes page.(4-3-2014)
Under Armour enters NASCAR with Hendrick & MWR: The sporting goods company, Under Armour, has signed multiyear sponsorships with Hendrick Motorsports and Michael Waltrip Racing. It becomes the official apparel provider for both teams, outfitting everyone from the pit crew to the front office in Under Armour-branded apparel. The deals don't include the teams' drivers, and financial terms weren't available. Last year, Under Armour signed a one-year, trial sponsorship with Hendrick Motorsports and outfitted the team's pit crews. It opted to expand that deal this year with a three-year extension that will see it outfit not only the pit crews but the rest of Hendrick's 500 employees. It provides everything from footwear and hats to polos and pullovers. It also has branding on Hendrick pit crew members' fire suits (Under Armour does not produce fire suits) and on the team's pit wall banners, haulers, pit box and pit toolbox. The deal doesn't include Hendrick's drivers - #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., #24-Jeff Gordon, #48-Jimmie Johnson or #5-Kasey Kahne - but Under Armour does have rights to use their likeness as well as the likeness of their car and number, which it could use on apparel.
Under Armour signed with Michael Waltrip Racing because it saw similarities between its identity as an upstart brand that's challenged established apparel companies and the team's identity as a relatively new, gritty team that's pushing its way into the upper echelon of NASCAR. Terms of the two-year sponsorship are similar to the deal with Hendrick. Under Armour will supply pit crew apparel and team and executive apparel and receive the same mix of pit assets it is getting from Hendrick. It also will become the presenting sponsor of a new athletic facility and gym that MWR built at its headquarters in Cornelius, N.C., which has been branded as the MWR Performance Center Presented by Under Armour. The deal is the first apparel sponsorship for MWR. The team previously bought its apparel from Oakley.(SportsBusiness Journal)(4-1-2014)
30th anniversary of Hendrick's first win: 30TH ANNIVERSARY: In 2014, Hendrick Motorsports is celebrating its 30th anniversary in NASCAR. The organization began in 1984 with five employees and 5,000 square feet of work space. It has grown to more than 500 employees with a 430,000-square-foot facility that sits on 140 acres. Driver Geoff Bodine won the Martinsville Speedway spring race on April 29, 1984, marking Hendrick Motorsports' first victory in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.(Hendrick Motorsports)(3-28-2014)
Teams complete tires test at Sonoma Five NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams completed a rain-dampened two-day Goodyear tire test at Sonoma Raceway on Wednesday. Intermittent rain fell at the raceway both Tuesday and Wednesday, but #9-Marcos Ambrose, #18-Kyle Busch, #24-Jeff Gordon, #14-Tony Stewart and #55-Brian Vickers were able to log approximately nine hours of track time over the two days. "Goodyear had a pretty stout tire here last year, and they want to improve on it if they can. They came here with some different compounds to try, and a good mix of teams and drivers to get feedback," said Ambrose, who started from the pole in Sonoma in 2012. "We also get a chance to set up the car up with the new technical regulations, which is helpful for the team. Ninety-five percent of the time was getting tires dialed in for Goodyear, and then the rest of the time was for us to see what we'll need when we come back." The two-day test marked the first Goodyear Sprint Cup Series tire test of the year, and is currently the only scheduled road-course test. Goodyear worked closely with the teams and drivers to develop a durable race package while giving teams the appropriate amount of grip.(Sonoma)(3-27-2014)
Gordon starts year with top 10s: #24-Jeff Gordon finished seventh at Bristol on Sunday, giving him top-10 finishes in each of the first four races of the season. Gordon had never started the year with such a streak until this year.(Motor Racing Network)(3-20-2014)
Axalta paint scheme debuts on the #24: The 2014 #24 Axalta Chevy SS paint scheme will make its first on-track appearance this weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The Brilliant Flames scheme features a blaze of neon-colored flames on a brilliant black background and was designed by renowned motor sports artist Sam Bass. (Hendrick Motorsports), see an image of the car on the #24 team paint schemes page.(3-6-2014)
New Jeff Gordon viral "test drive" video filmed in Charlotte area: #24-Jeff Gordon is at it again. A year after his hidden camera "Test Drive" ad for Pepsi Max went viral, he went undercover again for a part two. But this one came with a twist. Gordon took a lot of flack after the first video with many people across the internet saying it wasn't real and that the entire thing was faked. One of the loudest voices - a blogger named Travis Okulski. So with the help of a friend, Gordon and Pepsi Max teamed up to shoot another video - this time with Okulski as the unexpecting "victim." Okulski was flown down to Charlotte earlier this month under false pretenses. He thought he was getting a chance to get in the brand new Corvette Z06. In order to keep things quiet, Okulski was told the project was top secret and lots of money would be lost if people knew. That's when Gordon, dress with fake neck tattoos, a wig and fake facial hair, pulled up in a cab to pick Okulski up from the motel. After a few minutes of small talk, a state trooper pulls behind the cab and Gordon said something Okulski didn't want to hear. "There's a cop behind me. I get nervous when cops are on me. I just got out after 10 years in jail." After briefing pulling over, Gordon decides to make a run for it and the real fun (and screams) begin.(see full story and view the video at WBTV)(2-27-2014)
Special scheme for Gordon at Texas: Texas A&M alum Charles W. Shaver, Chairman and CEO of Axalta Coating Systems, will host 20 engineering students for Aggie Race Day at the Texas Motor Speedway on April 6. Students will experience the ultimate VIP treatment and see the impact engineers have on one of the most popular sports in the world. Axalta sponsors driver Jeff Gordon and the #24 Axalta Racing Chevrolet SS of Hendrick Motorsports in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. With his strong Aggie spirit and gratitude for his engineering training from our school, Charlie arranged for Jeff Gordon's car to be custom-painted Aggie maroon for the Texas race and bear the Texas A&M Engineering logo in premium sponsor locations on the car. "Engineering is integral to racing and the coatings systems we create," explained Charlie. "It's been a real privilege to serve on the Texas A&M Engineering Advisory Council for more than 12 years and now to be able to showcase our alma mater to the NASCAR community and show fellow Aggies how the great engineering education I received has translated into practical application. My career and the opportunities I've been able to provide to others all began with my time at the university."(Texas A&M Engineering), see an image of the scheme on the #24 Team schemes page.(2-25-2014)
The Most Valuable NASCAR Teams 2014: Thirty years ago Rick Hendrick launched All-Star Racing with five employees and 5,000 square feet of workspace. Geoff Bodine raced the fledgling outfit's sole NASCAR Cup entry in the #5 car and finished ninth in the season long standings, including three victories. The company was rebranded Hendrick Motorsports the following year and a racing dynasty was born. Hendrick Motorsports today carries more than 500 employees in 430,000 square feet of workspace across a 140 acre campus in Concord, N.C. It has racked up 218 victories and a record 11 season titles in Sprint Cup, plus an additional 52 wins and four championships in the Nationwide and Truck series. The success has propelled Hendrick to the top of the NASCAR food chain. The team is worth $348 million, by Forbes' count, twice as much as any other NASCAR squad.
Joe Gibbs Racing ranks No. 2 with a value of $171 million, up 2% from last year. Roush Fenway Racing ranks No. 3 with a value of $157 million, down 6%. The team making the biggest jump is Stewart-Haas Racing, which ranks fourth with a value of $148 million, up 20%. #5 is Richard Childress Racing at $128 million; #6 is Team Penske at $108 million; #7 is Michael Waltrip Racing at $80 million; #8 is Chip Ganassi Racing at $69 million; #9 is Richard Petty Motorsports at $50 million. See full report at Forbes.com.(2-22-2014)
Gordon says he'll retire if he wins Sprint Cup title: #24-Jeff Gordon said Thursday afternoon that he'll retire at the end of the season if he can finally capture his elusive fifth title this year. Gordon won his titles in 1995, '97, '98 and 2001 when Winston was the series sponsor, but in recent years has been unable to top teammate Jimmie Johnson, who won six titles between 2005 and 2013. "I go home and I look in my trophy room and I see four trophies that are championship trophies, but they say 'Winston Cup' on them," Gordon said at Thursday's NASCAR Media Day at Daytona International Speedway. "You can name me a four-time Sprint Cup (champion) for technical reasons all you want, but to me, I'm not. And I want that before my career is over." And if Gordon can do win a title this year, he'll call it quits. "If that happened, that would be all the reasons I need to say, 'This is it, I'm done,'" Gordon said. "Go out on a high note."(FoxSports)(2-14-2014)
Evernham leaves ESPN: Former crew chief Ray Evernham, who created one of NASCAR's most dominant teams in the 1990s with Jeff Gordon, will serve as a consultant to Hendrick Motorsports where he will be involved with the competition department. Evernham made the announcement Tuesday on "SiriusXM Speedway" with hosts Dave Moody and Angie Skinner. Evernham, who has served as a consultant for Hendrick Companies since 2011, also said that he no longer will be a part of ESPN's NASCAR broadcasts. "Now not doing the ESPN thing will allow me to be involved in some of the management and some of the things that they're doing at (Hendrick) Motorsports,'' Evernham told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. "The best way to avoid a conflict of interest is to choose one or the other. I'm excited about being able to go and being involved in the management team on the motorsports side.'' Evernham told "SiriusXM Speedway" that he is not seeking to be a crew chief - something he's stated often in the past. He admits he will be on a pit box, though, but in a different capacity. "I'll be working with everybody at Hendrick Motorsports,'' Evernham told the show. "I've met with crew chiefs. I think I've got a good perspective as they face different challenges. I will be going to meetings and be involved in competition things that I've not been involved with in the past three years or so." Evernham said he plans to attend about 15 races - nearly the same total he worked for ESPN.(MRN)(2-5-2014)
Hendrick Motorsports profiled on Showtime show Wed night: In a sport where their performance has to be 12 seconds or less, every tenth of a second can make the difference between victory or defeat. That's why NASCAR pit crews are so important to auto racing and why teams like Hendrick Motorsports are using athletes from college programs to make their pit crews the best they can be. CBS News correspondent on assignment, Jeff Glor, profiles a Hendrick team for the next edition of 60 Minutes Sports premiering tomorrow/Wed., Feb. 5, at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Showtime.(PR)(2-5-2014)
Gordon to unveil new Axalta scheme UPDATE: Jeff Gordon will unveil Axalta Racing's #24 Chevrolet SS paint scheme on Thursday, January 30th at the NASCAR Hall of Fame at 5:00 pm/et. At the event, Gordon will receive a donation from Axalta Coating Systems for Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation. The new scheme was designed by artist Sam Bass.
See images of the scheme on the #24 Team Schemes page.(1-30-2014)
Elliotts and Hendrick meet with NAPA? UPDATE Chase Elliott to NNS with NAPA: hearing earlier this week that Chase and Bill Elliott, Rick Hendrick and Kelley Earnhardt Miller met with officials at the NAPA Auto Parts headquarters in Atlanta. No definite word on what the meeting was about. Chase Elliott, a Hendrick Motorsports development driver, is looking for a sponsor for whatever series he may run in 2014. His former sponsor, Aaron's, decided not to sponsor Elliott in 2014 and ramp up their sponsorship of Brian Vickers in the #55 Michael Waltrip Racing Sprint Cup Series team for all the races in 2014 & 2015. NAPA Auto Parts had been a long time sponsor of Waltrip and his #56 team with soon to be former driver Martin Truex Jr. NAPA canceled their sponsorship of the #56 team and MWR after the "Richmond Scandal" in September. It'll be interesting to see what NAPA may do as rumors had them not returning to sponsor any NASCAR team in 2014 and sitting out the season and then rethinking their sponsorship plans. Have heard reports that NAPA did not want to sponsor a team in the Nationwide Series or Camping World Truck Series. Have heard that NAPA does not wish take over for Nationwide as the series sponsor what is now called the Nationwide Series when Nationwide leaves at the end of the 2014 season. Been told that NAPA only wants to sponsor a Sprint Cup Series team for a full season. Rumors also had NAPA moving over to the #78 Furniture Row Racing team with Martin Truex Jr. in some capacity.(11-15-2013)
UPDATE Chase Elliott to run full season for JR Motorsports, NAPA Returns: Chase Elliott will compete full time in the NASCAR Nationwide Series for JR Motorsports starting in 2014 and do so with NAPA AUTO PARTS as his full-season primary sponsor. With Elliott as its driver, the 2014 season will mark NAPA's 19th in NASCAR sponsorship. NAPA (National Automotive Parts Association) has more than 6,000 stores nationwide with more than 400,000 quality parts and accessories for automotive and industrial applications - the most extensive inventory in the industry. NAPA headquarters is in Atlanta, Ga., just a short distance from Elliott's hometown of Dawsonville, GA. "NAPA is pleased to continue its long standing involvement in NASCAR, the most popular form of motorsports in the United States supported by its many loyal and passionate fans," commented Dan Askey, President of NAPA. "Equally, we are proud to form this new partnership with JR Motorsports. Kelley Earnhardt Miller, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Rick Hendrick and its many employees have developed one of the premier teams in the Nationwide Series. Chase Elliott is a young and talented, future star in the sport and will represent NAPA well both on and off the track. We welcome Chase and the entire JR Motorsports organization to the NAPA Family." Elliott will carry the #9 on his NAPA Chevy - the same number his father, legendary racer Bill Elliott, carried for much of his storied career that included the 1988 Sprint Cup Series championship. The 2014 season will mark the younger Elliott's Nationwide Series debut. He turned 18 on Nov. 28, becoming eligible for competition. "This is the opportunity of a lifetime," Chase Elliott said. "My family and I are still trying to believe it all. I couldn't ask to be partnered with anyone better than Dale Jr., Kelley and Mr. Hendrick, along with all of the people at their organizations who have put in countless hours to pull this together."(JR Motorsports/NAPA), see an image of the car on the #9 NNS team paint schemes page.(1-6-2014)
No Crew Chief Changes for Hendrick: Team owner Rick Hendrick said before Sunday's race at Phoenix that there's no basis to rumors of impending crew chief changes among his four NASCAR Sprint Cup teams. "That's right -- no changes," said Hendrick, who swapped crew chiefs among three of his teams at the end of the 2010 season, leaving only the combination of driver Jimmie Johnson and crew chief Chad Knaus intact. "I don't know where any of that came from, but there's not going to be any changes. Nobody's even discussed anything. Everybody's pretty happy with what we've got... good momentum in the Chase and winning races. Take the things like blown tires and engines out of the equation, and it's one of the best Chases we've had, so there's no reason to change anything."(NASCAR Wire Service)(11-12-2013)
Gordon raising awareness about whooping cough: #24-Jeff Gordon is famous for winning on the racetrack, but during his downtime he is involved in several charitable causes, including the battle against whooping cough. Gordon is an ambassador for the National Sounds of Pertussis Campaign, a campaign that helps spread the word about whooping cough and the importance of vaccination. Whooping cough is extremely contagious and can cause serious, potentially deadly illness, especially in babies. "Many babies who get whooping cough are infected by parents, older siblings, or other caregivers who might not even know they have the disease," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "Anyone who comes in close contact with your baby, from older siblings and cousins to grandparents and caregivers, should be up-to-date with whooping cough vaccination."
"We as older adults aren't recognizing that immunizations we got when we were younger have now worn off," Gordon said.(Arizona Family)(11-9-2013)
Valvoline returns to sponsor Hendrick teams: Valvoline, a leading marketer, distributor and producer of quality branded automotive and industrial products and services, will be reunited with Hendrick Motorsports after finalizing a multi-year sponsorship agreement that will kick off next season. The Official Lubricants Partner of Hendrick Motorsports beginning in 2014, the Valvoline brand will be featured as a major associate sponsor of the team's full stable of Chevrolet SS race cars through the 2017 NASCAR campaign. The company will utilize Sprint Cup Series drivers #5-Kasey Kahne, #24-Jeff Gordon, #48-Jimmie Johnson and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. as spokespeople to promote Valvoline premium motor oil products and services. In addition, Valvoline will be the preferred oil poured by Hendrick Motorsports' sister company, Hendrick Automotive Group, which operates 87 auto dealerships across the United States. The dealerships also will use Valvoline professional series, a line of fuel system preventive maintenance products that increase fuel economy and drivability, and Valvoline antifreeze. Both product lines contain patented technology that provides exceptional performance. Beginning in 2014, Hendrick Motorsports will use Valvoline products in its Chevrolet R-07 racing engines in the elite Sprint Cup Series. Valvoline was a partner of the team from 1993-95, supplying lubricant technology that contributed to the organization's first Cup championship with Gordon.(Hendrick Motorsports), Valvoline will replace Quaker State Oil at HMS.(9-24-2013)
Duchardt named General Manager of Hendrick Motorsports: Doug Duchardt, who joined Hendrick Motorsports as an executive in 2005, has been elevated to the newly created position of executive vice president and general manager, effective immediately. He will report to team owner Rick Hendrick and company president Marshall Carlson. In his expanded role, Duchardt, 49, will direct all racing operations for Hendrick Motorsports, which fields four cars in the elite NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. He also will manage technical relationships -- encompassing engine leases and chassis purchases -- while serving as primary liaison between Hendrick Motorsports and NASCAR's competition group. Duchardt's responsibilities now include oversight of all competition-related personnel and departments, including teams; engines; race car construction (chassis and bodies); research and development; human performance (pit crews); and engineering. Longtime Hendrick Motorsports executive Ken Howes will continue to serve as vice president of competition, a role he assumed in January 2005. He will report to Duchardt.(Hendrick Motorsports)(7-30-2013)
Axalta Coating Systems extends sponsorship of #24 car: Axalta Coatings Systems, formerly DuPont Performance Coatings, not only launched its new brand this week, it today announced a three-year contract extension with the #24 Hendrick Motorsports team through 2016. In its 21st year of sponsorship, Hendrick Motorsports and Axalta will reach an extraordinary 24-year partnership. Currently the longest running driver, owner and sponsor combination in NASCAR, the partnership with driver Jeff Gordon has four NASCAR Cup Series championships and 87 NASCAR Sprint Cup wins to their credit. Axalta will have primary positioning on the #24 Chevy for 10 races for each of the next three years and will continue its associate sponsorship status for the remaining races.
"I'm so excited that Axalta has decided to move forward with us beyond 2013," Gordon said. "They've been with me since the beginning and I look forward to a lot more racing, some more wins and hopefully another championship with them before it's all over. And the newly rebranded Axalta company is still comprised of the same people I've been working with for more than two decades and I can't imagine my career without them. They are truly like family to me, (team owner) Rick Hendrick and this No. 24 team. I'm so excited that they're moving forward with us."
Under the DuPont Automotive Finishes banner, Axalta took a chance on a newly formed Hendrick Motorsports team with a young rookie driver starting in 1992 and has achieved much success on and off the track.
"This has truly been one of the most effective and iconic relationships in sports marketing," said Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports. "We celebrated 20 years together with a win at Homestead, and all of us look forward to many more successes with Jeff and the #24 team. The people at Axalta are like family, and we're committed to bringing even more value to the partnership." The Axalta logo will appear on the hood of the #24 Chevy for the first time this weekend at Pocono Raceway with the familiar "firestorm" paint scheme.
"We have built up so much equity in the #24 team over the years and Jeff Gordon is the best spokesperson any company could ask for," said Nigel Budden, Axalta Coating Systems North America Business Director "And like everything we do, the decision is customer driven. Our customers feel like a part of the No. 24 team after all these years, and the quality of the #24 team represents the quality of their businesses and the Axalta automotive paint products they take such pride in using."
Axalta Coating Systems has been a leading global provider of high performance coatings to the transportation industry for more than 145 years. The official Finish of NASCAR, Axalta flagship brands of fast drying automotive paint that are built for performance include Standox, Spies Hecker and DuPont Refinish. Axalta's Imron brand is the coating of choice for the heavy-duty truck industry and its Cromax Pro line is a leading environmentally friendly waterborne basecoat system.(Hendrick Motorsports), see images of the scheme on the #24 Team Schemes page.(6-6-2013)
New look for the #24 Chevy, starting at Pocono: The last time Jeff Gordon visited Pocono Raceway, the #24 Chevy had a great finish. This time he will have the same great finish - just with a different name. In August, Gordon started 27th and worked his way up to sixth before a lap-90 restart. One corner later, he was leading. Contact between the leaders sent the top four either into a spin or out of the groove. Gordon drove the bottom lane to the lead - and to the win since the race never restarted due to rain. The finish on the car that weekend was DuPont Performance Coatings. That business was sold in the first quarter of this year and was re-branded Axalta Coating Systems. So while the name may have changed, Gordon's #24 Chevrolet SS will feature the same great finish in this Sunday's Party in the Poconos 400. Plus, the car will display the bold new Axalta logo. The #24 Axalta Coating Systems Chevrolet SS will feature the familiar FireStorm paint scheme.(Performance PR Plus / HMS), see an image of the scheme on the #24 Team Schemes page.(6-5-2013)
HMS cars to carry special decal: All four Hendrick Motorsports cars: #5-Kahne, #24-Gordon, #48-Johnson & #88-Earnhardt Jr., will carry the above special decal at Kansas Speedway honoring those effected by the Boston Maraton Bombings this past Monday.(HMS Facebook)(4-21-2013)
Brother of HMS Machinist killed in Cambridge: Hendrick Motorsports Statement: The thoughts and prayers of everyone at Hendrick Motorsports are with Andrew Collier and his family. Andrew, a machinist in the Hendrick Motorsports engine department, tragically lost his brother, Officer Sean Collier, last night in Cambridge, Mass. We ask that the family's privacy be considered during this difficult time. Andrew, 25, joined Hendrick Motorsports in September 2008.(HMS)(4-19-2013)
How much longer will Jeff Gordon keep racing: #24-Jeff Gordon, who ranks third on the all-time wins list with 87 victories, is moving closer to the end of his career at age 41, but just when will that be in a series where Mark Martin is still driving at age 54? "There was a time when I didn't think I was going to be racing at 40, so I hate to even say 'never say never,' but I'm pretty sure that's not something that is in the cards for me," Gordon said of racing as long as Martin has. "I don't work as hard on the physical side as Mark does, so from a physical standpoint I don't think I'd be prepared for it. Also, I'm as excited about the future that I have when that day comes when I'm not driving the car in motorsports, maybe even some other opportunities and my kids and my family and that life. I feel like I have a whole other step of life and career ahead of me that if I selfishly race until I'm 50 or 52, I think it's going to take away some of those opportunities that are there that I'm excited about."(Sports Illustrated)(1-25-2013)
Jeff Gordon book: If you sent a letter to Jeff Gordon in the 1990's, chances are that it was opened by Molly and Russ Harris, the founders of the Jeff Gordon National Fan Club - the largest personal touch fan club in racing. For more than a decade, they opened Jeff Gordon's mail! Molly's new book "Opening Jeff Gordon's Mail" takes readers on a behind-the-scenes tour of the Jeff Gordon National Fan Club. For more info see my NASCAR Book page.(2-13-2012)
Daytona International Speedway
Daytona Beach, FL
Happy Hour Practice:
Saturday, February 21, 2015, TBA pm/et
Born in NOVEMBER:
21 Sheri Umscheid, Travis Carter, Terry Elledge, Victor Breininger, Banjo Grimm, Alexis Leras, Ruben Garcia Mateos
22 Laurie Weil, Luke Kosner, Jake Elder, Rick Viers, Ryan McGlynn, Jamie Skinner, Scott Moyer
23 Ron Bouchard, Chris Spencer, Conrad Burr, Tony Roper
24 Buddy Parrott, James Ince, Nathan Haseleu
25 Skip Eyler, Joe Gibbs, Mike Joy, Carl Gansert
26 Dale Jarrett, Chip Bolin, Katie Pearson
27 Billy Standridge, Kate Dallenbach, Ricky Carmichael, Kaitlyn Punch
28 Chase Elliott, Billy Sutphin, Mitch Way, Nelson Stacy, Mason Mingus
29 Bob Dillner, Zach Brewer, Ryan Ellis, Tanner Berryhill
30 Danny Earnhardt, Dave Dion, Dick Hutcherson, Shawna Robinson, Chris Hussey, Andy Kirby, Brittany Glover
Born in DECEMBER:
1 Stanton Barrett Jr, Kenny Francis, David Evans, Danny Gill, Larry Gunselman
2 Erik Darnell, Kelly Kellis, Victoria Trickle
3 Bobby Allison, Cody Cook
4 Dean Johnson, Evelyn Andrews, Doug Keller
5 J.D. McDuffie, Jim Paschal, Jim Hurtubise
6 Stacey Witzke, Christian Elder
7 Geoff Smith, Paul Moore, Richmond Gage
8 Susan Adamczyk (sister), Garry Hill, Kevin Harvick, Ryan Newman, Kerry Earnhardt, Nadine Lubejko, Zachary Jarrett
9 Steve Richards, Coy Gibbs, Brad Teague, Lori Wetzel
10 Mike 'Jimbo' Barrientos, Makayla Ann McSwain, Jerry Honeycut