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Gordon Knocking on the Door at Texas

JUSTIN, Texas (April 1, 2004) – Jeff Gordon leads all NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series drivers with three consecutive top-five finishes in the last three events at Texas Motor Speedway, and this Sunday, the driver of the No. 24 DuPont Chevrolets hopes to capitalize on that momentum by achieving his first win at the venue.

After a tumultuous beginning at the Texas track in which he did not finish better than 25th in the first four events, Gordon’s more recent performances at the 1.5-mile quad-oval have him hoping to “check off” TMS as another track where he holds a win.

“I’m excited with the way we’ve run here the last couple of times,” Gordon said.  “I used to dread coming here, but now I kind of look forward to it because even though we’ve come up a little short, we’ve been strong here recently.”

Gordon currently leads active drivers with victories at 19 of the 23 tracks on the NASCAR NEXTEL schedule.  In addition to Texas, the only tracks where he has yet to visit Victory Lane are Chicago, Phoenix and Miami.

“I’d like to get a victory here for several reasons,” Gordon said.  “We’ve never won here, so it would be nice to get the first one out of the way, and it would also be good to get our first victory of the season.

“A win really pumps the team up and it would be nice to go into the off weekend with some momentum. It’s always nice to be able to savor a victory for several weeks.”

Last year, Gordon endured a strong battle with Dale Earnhardt Jr. for the second position in the closing laps of the Samsung/Radio Shack 500.  At the end, Gordon settled for third.

“I was content battling for second with Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the closing laps, trying to get that second spot,” Gordon said.  “But I wanted to make sure I at least brought the car home in third.

“If I would have pushed the issue a little more, it’s possible neither one of us would have come back with the car in one piece.”

Seven different drivers have visited victory lane in Texas since the inaugural race in 1997.

Gordon looks to be the eighth.

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