Robby Gordon Rallies to Finish 25th Charlotte CONCORD, NC (Oct. 14, 2006) -- With a solid qualifying effort of 19th and two top-10 practice sessions in the No. 7 Menards/MAPEI Chevrolet, Robby Gordon's confidence in a win or a top-five was at a...
Robby Gordon Rallies to Finish 25th Charlotte
CONCORD, NC (Oct. 14, 2006) -- With a solid qualifying effort of 19th and two top-10 practice sessions in the No. 7 Menards/MAPEI Chevrolet, Robby Gordon's confidence in a win or a top-five was at a season's high as the Bank of America 500 began Saturday night.
Before the first lap was complete, however, Gordon spun through the infield grass after the No. 4 of Todd Bodine got loose in front of Gordon causing him to chase the car off the track and through the slick grass on the track's infield.
Knowing that he still had a fast car that was free of any damage from the spin, Gordon restarted 37th and on the lead lap.
By the time the next caution flag was displayed on lap 16, he had gained back eight spots, taking the next opportunity on pit road for fuel only to pack the smaller 13-gallon fuel cell tight.
Battling a slight tightness in the center of the corner, Gordon had plenty of opportunity to adjust to as the first 60 laps of the race were littered with cautions. Making the first green-flag stop of the evening on lap 79 for two tires, fuel and an air-pressure adjustment, Gordon was set to make a charge at the top 10 for the first time of the night. After stops cycled through, Gordon was shown in 10th position, ready to find his way into the top five.
Getting his first opportunity to gain that track position, Gordon stayed out while others pitted for tires and fuel on lap 117. Restarting in third and with more than half the race remaining, Gordon was in perfect position to maintain until the time came to make his run at the leader.
Remaining inside the top 10 for the next 80 laps, bad luck reared its ugly head on lap 241. As Gordon made his way down the backstretch, the No. 6 of Mark Martin and the No. 18 of J.J. Yeley tangled, collecting Gordon in the process. With significant damage to the left side of No. 7, Gordon brought it to the garage for repairs. Returning 35 laps later and with no cars competing on the same lap, Gordon ran out the remainder of the race and was relegated to a 25th-place finish.
"This could've of been a very big weekend for us," said Gordon."The car was a little tight in the early runs, but it wasn't anything that we couldn't adjust on later for our final run. We definitely had a car that was very capable of finishing inside the top 5. It's just unfortunate that we got caught up by someone's mistake, and had to settle for 25th. Our mile-and-a-half program is pretty solid but we just can't seem to catch a break at these tracks. Saturday night was just further proof of that. All the guys in shop and here at the track worked hard to give me the best possible equipment and I am very proud of them for that."
Gordon and the No. 7 Menards/MAPEI Chevy hit the final short-track race of the 2006 NASCAR Nextel Cup season as they head to Martinsville Speedway.
-credit: team gordon