GORDON HOPES TO RIDE THE 'WAVE' TO VICTORY IN CALIFORNIA FONTANA, Calif. - Jeff Gordon has caught the "Wave," now he wants to ride it to victory in the Auto Club 500 at California Speedway on Sunday. Gordon's No. 24 Chevrolet will carry the ...
GORDON HOPES TO RIDE THE 'WAVE' TO VICTORY IN CALIFORNIA
FONTANA, Calif. - Jeff Gordon has caught the "Wave," now he wants to ride it to victory in the Auto Club 500 at California Speedway on Sunday. Gordon's No. 24 Chevrolet will carry the familiar "fire and flames" design in this weekend's 500-mile race but will feature a new waterborne paint from DuPont Refinish. DuPont Cromax(R) Pro, which is being introduced in preparation for strict California emissions regulations, and their "Catch the Wave" product slogan will be featured on the four- time NASCAR Cup Series champion's Monte Carlo SS and firesuit.
"This is our 15th year together, and it's always exciting to showcase DuPont's great line of paint products on our Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet," said Gordon. "Hopefully, we can provide the perfect backdrop for photographs of the car in Victory Lane."
Last Sunday, Gordon began the 2007 campaign with a 10th-place finish in the Daytona 500. While he had hoped for a better finish, Gordon had to be satisfied with the result considering his race ended with a trip to the infield care center. "The end to last Sunday's race was definitely crazy," said Gordon. "We lost the handle on the car about halfway through the race, but we were able to get it back and make a run at the end.
"After being involved in that last-lap crash, I guess I can't be too upset with a top-10 finish in a badly damaged race car."
Gordon will look to keep the fenders in place this weekend at the two-mile track located in Fontana. There have been 11 different winners in the 13 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup races held here, and Gordon is the only multiple-race winner with victories in 1997, 1999 and 2004. (more)
"This track has widened out since the inaugural race in 1997," said Gordon. "Initially, it was a one-groove track, but recently we've been able to run three and four-wide through the corners. That's what you like to see as a driver. It gives us the ability to search for lines that work for our car.
"And I'm sure the fans love to see that, as well."
If Gordon sees the checkered flag first on Sunday, he will tie Dale Earnhardt for sixth on the all-time career win list with 76. But that distinction is not what drives him.
"When I saw my first checkered flag, all I knew is that I wanted to experience that thrill again," said Gordon. "And when I won my first NASCAR championship, I knew I wanted to win another and another.
"With NASCAR's new points structure introduced this season, winning races and winning the championship are somewhat linked. If we make the Chase, our race wins will determine our position in the standings heading into the final 10 races.
"And I want to be first."