Jeff Gordon had about as bad a race at Chicagoland Speedway as he could. He broke the suspension on his car and finished 35th. This moved him 47 points out of first place in the NASCAR Chase for the Sprint Cup. If he is to have any chance at all at the Championship he has to do well at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Jeff said, “It was a disappointing result (in Chicago), but we had a fast race car. We had a great run from 19th to inside the top five, and I would have liked to have seen if we had anything for them at the end, but we’ll put that event behind us and focus on trying to win Loudon this weekend. There is still a long way to go.”
Jeff Gordon was second in practice at 134.174 MPH to Denny Hamlin who was 134.820. Denny qualified a disappointing 32nd. Jeff said about practice, “We struggled a little bit in race trim. Still really battling with this tire. We went into qualifying trim and got a really good lap.” Jeff was able to pick his practice speed up to 134.911 MPH, .033 seconds faster than Kyle Busch.
Jeff and his No 24 Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet team is hoping to win at New Hampshire Motor Speedway and get right back into the Chase. When asked about his chances Jeff said, “Oh yeah, we’re still riding that wave from Richmond. That was an amazing performance for us, a much needed performance and only proof that you never give up. You never stop working hard to get a victory or to get the maximum amount of points that you can get week in and week out. We’ve overcome a lot this year. With all we’ve been through, last week was a bump in the road, but it’s not putting us in that mind frame where we’re just completely devastated and feel like we’re out of it.”
After qualifying Jeff Gordon was ecstatic, “This car has been awesome in qualifying trim all day long. I just give a lot of credit to this Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet team. Don’t forget to text Hunger to 50555 to continue to help this great cause. What an awesome effort, great lap. It felt good. The car got off the corner really strong and I thought that it would be really close and as tight as these times are you just never know. Kyle (Busch) laid down a heck of a lap so did Tony (Stewart) there to shoot for and man I’m so proud. That felt great. To go out and get a pole on a non-restrictor track, we haven’t done that in a little while so this feels really good.”
Kyle Busch will start second, Tony Stewart third, Brian Vickers fourth, and Carl Edwards fifth.
If you can’t get to the track the race will be on ESPN on Sunday, September 23rd, at 1 PM ET.
Follow him on Twitter @brian_jr1 during the race and throughout the week for more NASCAR news and commentary. On Facebook at NASCAR News and Commentary