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Gordon, Martin can score a bonus at Chicagoland

 

JOLIET, Ill. (July 7, 2009) - A $1 million bonus is up for grabs in the LifeLock.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway, but only a pair of drivers—Hendrick Motorsports teammates Jeff Gordon and Mark Martin—can secure the extra loot.

At Michigan International Speedway in June, the duo finished one-two with Martin taking the victory in the LifeLock 400. To win the bonus provided by the title sponsor of the race, the pair must occupy the top-two spots—in any order—at the conclusion of Saturday night’s event.

“I’d love for that to occur,” said Gordon, who is second in the standings, 180 points behind leader Tony Stewart. “After his Daytona weekend, I think Mark wants a good, strong performance this weekend.

“And a second-place finish behind me can earn him a lot of points and a lot of dough,” Gordon joked. “We can’t afford to spot him too many bonus points before the Chase begins, so I’d prefer he finish second in this instance. Seriously, I think Mark will be one of the drivers contending for the win this weekend and I hope we are battling him for that position.”

In eight career starts at the 1.5-mile track, Gordon has one win (2006), one pole position (2004), four top-five finishes, five top-10s and a 10.1 average finish. Last year, Gordon posted an 11th-place finish in the first night race for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at the Illinois track.

“I’m really looking forward to Saturday night’s race,” said Gordon, who will drive a specially painted No. 24 DuPont/National Guard Chevrolet this weekend. “I feel our intermediate track program has really turned a corner this year.”

In six starts on intermediate tracks 1.5 -to-2 miles in length in 2009, Gordon has one win (Texas), three second-place finishes (California, Atlanta and Michigan), a sixth (Las Vegas) and a 14th (rain-shortened Charlotte event).

“Another strong run would be nice, especially going into an off-weekend,” said Gordon, who is scheduled to be an award presenter at The 2009 ESPYs next week. “It gives the guys some confidence heading into the Brickyard.”

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