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Gordon Earns Third Consecutive Pole

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 2, 2004) – Jeff Gordon nabbed his third pole position in as many weeks on Thursday, posting the quickest lap in NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series qualifying for the Pepsi 400 at Daytona International Speedway.

Driving the No. 24 DuPont/Pepsi Chevrolet, Gordon posted a speed of 188.660 mph (47.705 seconds) during time trials.

The front row starting position marks the “24” crew’s fourth pole of the season and 50th overall.  They have started up front this year at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway in April and most recently at Michigan International Speedway and Infineon Raceway in June.

“On tracks like Daytona, you wish you could bring the guys in who really made it happen because the driver gets the accolades or the publicity, but he certainly doesn’t do a whole lot to make that happen,” says Gordon. “This DuPont/Pepsi team really surprised me and I’m just so proud of them. We’ve been qualifying great, but I didn’t expect to come in here and qualify like this.”

The rest of the Hendrick stable qualified in the top 20 for Saturday night’s 400-mile event. Driver Terry Labonte piloted the No. 5 Cheez-It/Spiderman 2 Chevrolet to a tenth-place starting position and rookie Brian Vickers will line up 14th in the No. 25 GMAC Financial Services Chevrolet. Team Lowe’s Racing and driver Jimmie Johnson will start the race from 19th.

In Daytona Busch Series competition, Team Lowe’s Racing driver Kyle Busch also cemented a top starting spot with a strong qualifying run yesterday. The No. 5 Lowe’s/Gladiator machine will line up eighth on the grid for tonight’s Winn Dixie 250 presented by Pepsi Co.

Tonight’s Busch Series event will air on FX (7:30 p.m. ET) and MRN Radio (7:45 p.m.) The Pepsi 400 NEXTEL Cup event will air Saturday night on FOX (7 p.m.) and MRN Radio (7 p.m.)

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