CONCORD, N.C. – As Hendrick Motorsports prepares to race at Richmond this weekend, three team members are also making plans to return to their hometowns.
The Nos. 5, 24 and 88 teams have team members who call Virginia home and will be competing at their home track of Richmond International Raceway on Sunday.
Keith Eads, tire specialist on the No. 5 Mountain Dew Pitch Black Chevrolet SS, grew up in Arlington, Virginia, about two hours north of the Virginia short track.
He recalls visiting the track as a child with his father and said that it’s always an enjoyable one to race.
“I’ve had a lot of good memories there,” Eads said. “It’s the first track I went to. It’s always fun to go back and it’s one of the better tracks that we go to.”
In his seventh year with Hendrick Motorsports, Eads said he feels as though the No. 5 Chevy team has what it takes to get a win at the track, which would be Eads’ first Richmond victory with the organization.
“It’d be huge -- it would be big,” he said. “We’ve had good runs there so I think we can do it. To win at Richmond or even Martinsville – another one close to home – would be great.”
Also heading home to Virginia this weekend is Lee Dodson, mechanic on the No. 24 Mountain Dew Baja Blast Chevrolet SS.
Dodson has been with the organization for three years and handles all the front suspension on the No. 24 Chevy.
Hailing from 72 miles southeast of Richmond in Courtland, Virginia, Dodson said he is excited to return to his home track to not only see family but also to hopefully land in Victory Lane at the track for the first time.
“I like going to Richmond because I’ve never won there,” he said. “But since Virginia is my home state I’d like to win at all the Virginia tracks. That would be good for me.”
Adam Jordan, interior mechanic on the No. 88 Mountain Dew DEWcision Chevrolet SS grew up in Timberville, Virginia, a town just under three hours northwest of Richmond.
Jordan got his start in motor sports through a coworker at the body shop in Virginia where he used to work. When the coworker moved to North Carolina to pursue a job in NASCAR, Jordan joined him.
Now in his fifth season with Hendrick Motorsports, Jordan will be returning to his home track of Richmond this weekend with the No. 88 team.
“I think it’s really neat because I remember as a kid going there and watching the race,” Jordan said of returning home. “I’ve never been on a team to win there. In my career I’ve won a lot of races, like the Daytona 500, but I think to win Richmond would probably be up there.”
Also on the schedule this weekend? A fishing trip with his dad and uncles following Sunday’s race.