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Gordon ready for Homestead, but won't end his racing season there

 

HOMESTEAD, Fla. (Nov. 11, 2008) - This weekend, Jeff Gordon will head south for the Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway—the season finale for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. While the racing for NASCAR’s premier division ends Sunday, Gordon will face another group of premier drivers later this month much farther south—in Brazil.

But before he travels south of the equator, Gordon will attempt to secure his 14th top-10 finish in the standings in 16 seasons of racing in the NASCAR’s top division. He is currently seventh in the standings and only 82 points behind fifth place. If he is able to make up that deficit, it would mark his 10th top-five finish in the final standings.

“We’ve never won here, and I would like to end the year on a positive note,” said Gordon, who has posted four top-five finishes and seven top-10s in nine starts at the 1.5-mile track. “And hopefully we can gain a few positions in the standings, too.

“We’ve had some strong runs here in the past and, with the improvements we’ve made recently in our intermediate track program, a strong run this weekend could give this DuPont team a spark heading into the offseason.”

Following the race, the No. 24 team will begin preparations for the 2009 season while Gordon still will have some racing left on his plate. On Nov. 30, he is scheduled to race in the International Challenge Of Go-Kart Champs in Florianopolis, Brazil—a charity karting event organized by Formula 1 driver Felipe Massa. Seven-time Formula 1 champion Michael Schumacher and Indy Racing League driver Tony Kanaan also are scheduled to participate in the event.

“I really respect and admire Felipe as a race car driver, and this is such a great opportunity to race against some of the best drivers in the world while benefiting a worthwhile charity,” Gordon said. “I don’t drive karts that often—although we do have a Jeff Gordon Foundation go-kart event each year—and I think the last time I drove one competitively was when I was 11 or 12 years old. I don’t know what to expect, but I’m sure it will be a fun experience.”

“It is a great pleasure to host Jeff in Brazil,” Massa said. “I rate him as the best American driver. We met at the Race of Champions in Paris some years ago and since then I’ve been trying to convince him to join the party. “Like Michael Schumacher, I bet he will love the race, the city, the friendly atmosphere and will come back in the next years.”

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