CONCORD, N.C. – After this Sunday’s race at Talladega Superspeedway, only eight drivers will advance into the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.
During last season’s final race of the Contender Round, Jeff Gordon and the No. 24 team drove their way into the top eight in standings, continuing their drive for the championship.
“Talladega is such a wildcard. I’m confident in our race cars and our race team – we have led laps and run well at Daytona and Talladega this year – but there’s always the chance of being in a wreck. We are going to be aggressive and race hard and see where the points end up,” he said.
No matter where the competition finishes, Gordon can secure a spot in the next round with a finish of first or second.
Tune in to Sunday afternoon’s race to watch the No. 24 team as they compete in the final Contender Round event.
BROADCAST INFORMATION: Sunday's race will air live on NBC Sports Network at 2:30 p.m. ET. Can’t make it to a television? Tune into MRN or SiriusXM to catch the Talladega radio coverage. This weekend’s qualifying session will take place Saturday afternoon on NBC Sports Network. Tune in to this weekend’s practice sessions this Friday also on NBC Sports Network. Here is the full broadcast schedule:
Friday, October 23:
2 p.m. ET, Sprint Cup Series Practice, NBC Sports Network
4:30 p.m. ET, Sprint Cup Series Final Practice, NBC Sports Network
Saturday, October 24:
4:15 p.m. ET, Sprint Cup Series Qualifying, NBC Sports Network
Sunday, October 25:
2:30 p.m. ET, Sprint Cup Series Race, NBCSN/ MRN/ SiriusXM (2:46 p.m. ET green flag)
THIS WEEK’S PAINT SCHEMES: Kasey Kahne will pilot the No. 5 Time Warner Cable Chevrolet SS this Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway. Jeff Gordon will return to the No. 24 3M Chevrolet SS for a third consecutive weekend, while teammate Johnson races the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet SS. Dale Earnhardt Jr. will return the No. 88 Diet Mountain Dew Chevrolet SS in the final race of the Contender Round.
HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS AT TALLADEGA: In 63 Cup events at Talladega, Hendrick Motorsports has 12 wins, 51 top-five finishes and 75 top-10 finshes. The organization’s 12 victories are tied for first all-time among organizations. Hendrick Motorsports’ most recent Talladega win came earlier this season, when Earnhardt made his way to Victory Lane after qualifying fourth.
KAHNE AT TALLADEGA: In 47 starts at the restrictor-plate tracks of Daytona International Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway, Kahne has recorded a combined five top-five finishes and 13 top-10 finishes. Four of Kahne’s 17 career wins happened on tracks two miles or longer.
GORDON AT TALLADEGA: Gordon leads active drivers in top-five finishes and top-10 finishes at the Alabama track, while he is tied with Hendrick Motorsports teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. for most victories and Joe Nemechek for most pole positions.
JOHNSON AT TALLADEGA: Talladega is known for its close finishes. In May, Johnson, the driver of the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet SS, finished second by 0.159 seconds behind race winner and teammate Earnhardt at the 2.66-mile superspeedway.
E!’S “THE SOUP” LIVE IN ‘DEGA: Earnhardt will join host Joel McHale when “The Soup” goes live from Talladega on Friday, Oct. 23. “The Soup” will air at 10 p.m. ET on E!. The driver of the No. 88 Diet Mountain Dew Chevrolet SS joined McHale last month to promote the Talladega live show with a fun clip that featured several costume changes.
EARNHARDT AT TALLADEGA: This season, Earnhardt has been dominant on superspeedways, earning an average finish of 1.7 in three races. At Talladega, the Kannapolis, North Carolina, native drove the No. 88 Chevrolet SS to victory in May and has the series’ leading average finish among active drivers of 15.1 in 31 career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at the 2.66-mile oval. Earnhardt is tied for the most all-time wins at the track among active drivers with six alongside teammate Gordon, but holds the all-time laps led honor among active drivers for himself with 899 laps led.