DuPont team takes slim lead into Kansas Speedway
- Sep 29, 2007
- 24 Team
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (Sept. 29, 2007) – The difference between Jeff Gordon and fourth place in the standings? Four points—and the final lap at Dover.
Gordon, who struggled with the handling on his DuPont Chevrolet during much of last Sunday’s race, gained two positions on the final lap at Dover to salvage an 11th-place finish. Those two positions—and six gained points—are the difference between Gordon entering this Sunday’s LifeLock 400 at Kansas Speedway as the Chase points leader rather than the fourth-place driver.
“You have to make the most of the bad days and take advantage of the good days,” Gordon said. “When the race started at Dover, the car was awesome and I thought we were going to have a great day. But we lost the handle on the car and it was a struggle from that point on.
“While a lot of the Chase contenders encountered some problems, we were able to get a respectable finish and the points lead. But there’s still eight races to go and many more points to be gained and lost.”
The four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion hopes Kansas is in the “gain” category. In six starts at Kansas, Gordon has two wins (inaugural race in 2001 and again in 2002), three top-fives, four top-10s, and he has led 169 laps. He will start fifth there on Sunday.
“We’ve had success here and I really enjoy the track,” Gordon said. “A lot of people compare Kansas to Chicago due to their similar layouts, but Kansas is unique. This track has matured over the past couple of years, and I think it now offers great side-by-side racing.”
Last year, Gordon entered the Kansas event second in the standings, six points out of the lead. But a fuel pump failure ended a good run in the event, and a wreck and a blown engine in the following weeks ended his bid for the 2006 championship.
“We finished sixth last year in the points, but I don’t think it was indicative of how well we ran during the Chase,” Gordon said. “We ran well here, at Talladega and at Charlotte—all races where we had poor finishes. In fact, we were strong at nine of the 10 Chase races with the lone exception being Homestead.
“I think that carried over to this year. We had a great start to the season and we have four wins so far and a lot of top-fives and top-10s.
“I hope we have a great end to the season as well.”