Four-time Cup series champion Jeff Gordon and his Hendrick Chevrolet No. 24 team are in the hunt to earn their fifth championship. After a spotty start to the season, Gordon has been pumped with new found fire. Pace laps: Jeff Gordon...
Four-time Cup series champion Jeff Gordon and his Hendrick Chevrolet No. 24 team are in the hunt to earn their fifth championship. After a spotty start to the season, Gordon has been pumped with new found fire.
The Hendrick team seems to have hit on a championship combination this year, as they strive to garner Gordon another series ring.
"It's no secret that our engine department has really picked up," said Gordon. "We had our problem at Michigan but they feel very confident. With each week that we sit on another pole, that we win another race, the confidence level continues to get higher and higher. When the driver comes in, he is the computer and information to the team.
"The team is the fix and the ones to make the adjustments to make it do what you need it to do. All they can go off of is what you say. All you can go off of is what they do to it. Whatever I say the car is doing, they look at me and say 'absolutely.' They don't question. My confidence level in them goes right back up. The results are showing."
Gordon's win last weekend moved him to third in series standings, 232- points behind leader Jimmie Johnson. Ultimately, current point rankings are insignificant, as the series championship format changed this year, so that the points are reset after the 26th event of the schedule.
That is not a worry, however, for Gordon, who performs well at almost every track in the top-ten in points. Although, Gordon and crew chief Robbie Loomis are concerned about reach their zenith too early in the season.
"I'm certainly a little bit concerned with that right now," said Gordon on peaking. "We needed to get on this type of streak to keep ourselves in the top ten in points. We were falling back and found ourselves sixth in points. We needed to get on this type of run to do that. It kind of exceeded our expectations.
"I knew we were capable of winning races, top fives and consistently finishing up there, but I had no idea we were getting on to this kind of streak. I wanted to be on this kind of streak coming into the last ten races, but I don't know if there's any reason why we shouldn't be able to maintain. It goes further than good cars and confidence with one another.
"You've got to have the good fortune and the good karma. I hope we can have this type of run in the last ten. This is what it's going to take to win the championship and it's what we we're doing right now. Right now it doesn't matter whether we do this other than staying in the top ten and having a lot of fun."
Team 24 certainly looks untouchable right now, they are on a roll that other teams strive to achieve."I know it's the first time I've ever won four poles in a row," Gordon commented. "I've been very fortunate to have some good streaks along the way. This one is pretty amazing right now. I look at this sport and how competitive it is and how difficult it is to win.
"I was talking with Dave Burns (NBC) and he said I remember this time last year we were trying to figure out when you were going to win a race. It's pretty funny how things go up and down. I just want to try and maintain this one as long as I can."