CONCORD, N.C. – NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon returned to his roots Thursday when he strapped into a midget car and ran a few laps at his old stomping grounds for the first time in 30 years.
At the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Gordon, who won the inaugural Brickyard 400 race in 1994 and kissed the bricks following his victories in 1998, 2001, 2004 and 2014, strapped into a midget car that mirrored his iconic white livery that he drove to the 1990 USAC National Midget Series championship to help promote an upcoming event at the speedway’s dirt track.
“Something about this place is just magical for a lot of people, but for me, in particular,” Gordon said. “It’s always been that way from the time I came here and just went through the IMS Museum before I was even able to drive a race car around this track, to the first time I did drive a race car here.
“And then every time thereafter, I come to visit here, and I still get excited driving through the tunnel. This place, the history and what it means to motorsports and what it means to me is incredible.”
Gordon, who moved to Pittsboro, Indiana when he was 15-years-old, started his racing career in midgets in 1989 where he won Rookie of the Year in the USAC National Midget Series. He later went on to win 93 races in the NASCAR Cup Series and four championship titles.
“I feel like I’ve gone back 25 years in my youth,” Gordon said. “It’s been a long time since I was that excited to get behind the wheel of a race car. I can’t believe I waited this long to get back on dirt in a midget. In another way, I’m very excited that I waited, because it’s a cool event, it’s a great track, and it just made it very special for me.”
Check out some of the photos from Gordon’s day at The Dirt Track at Indianapolis Motor Speedway below.