Jeff Gordon won at the Pocono Raceway last August in a crazy way.
As the rain was rapidly approaching Pocono, NASCAR was attempting to get at least a few more laps under the green flag before the race would be called. Gordon restarted the race in the sixth position and somehow made it to the lead after the leaders wrecked in the center of the first corner, which would eventually enable him to visit victory lane for one of just two times in 2012.
That was Gordon’s sixth win at Pocono, which happened to have broken his tie with Bill Elliott for the most wins at the Pennsylvania track. Though the race was rained out, Gordon wanted people to know his win wasn’t just a fluke. He ended up winning at Homestead to end the season, which wasn’t one of the standards he’s accustomed to.
Gordon has run well this year, but not at the point where he’s in contention to win races. However, he does have three third-place finishes including Sunday’s race at Dover, giving him momentum heading into Pocono. Though he had a slow start with the Generation Six car, Gordon seemed to have figured out the handle on his Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet.
Gordon was closing in on a win last weekend while Tony Stewart and Juan Pablo Montoya were battling for the lead, but he came up just short in third. However, he didn’t have a car that was capable of running up front all afternoon, which has to be concerning for his crew.
Returning to Pocono can be a good thing for Gordon. It can help him build up some confidence as well as take some momentum with him heading into the summer months, something he’s lacked for the past few years. Expect Gordon to have a breakout weekend at Pocono, especially with the debut of Axalta as the sponsor of his No. 24 car.
Joseph Wolkin can be followed on Twitter at @JosephNASCAR.