Phoenix II: Robby Gordon race report

Robby Gordon Finishes 32nd at Phoenix International Raceway PHOENIX, Ariz. (Nov. 12, 2006) -- Being a previous winner at the one-mile oval back in his open-wheel days, Robby Gordon came into Phoenix International Raceway with an air of...

Robby Gordon Finishes 32nd at Phoenix International Raceway

PHOENIX, Ariz. (Nov. 12, 2006) -- Being a previous winner at the one-mile oval back in his open-wheel days, Robby Gordon came into Phoenix International Raceway with an air of confidence, optimistic of a top five and hoping to find some momentum before heading into the season finale on Nov. 19th at Miami-Homestead Speedway.

Missing valuable practice time due to an engine failure early in the weekend's final session, Gordon, relegated to a 43rd-place starting position, would have to drive his way through the field if he was to complete his goal.

It was evident early though that a top-five finish wasn't in the cards for Gordon and his No. 7 Harrah's Chevy as Gordon felt a vibration coming from the engine bay as early as the sixth lap.

Battling issues under the hood, Gordon also fought an ill-handling race car.

"We missed the majority of final practice on Saturday because of the engine change and that really put us behind with the final adjustments to the car. We were pretty consistent in the morning session, but the (weather) conditions were a lot different than in final practice, which was pretty similar to what saw during the race. The new motor was down on power, and I had to drive the car deeper into the corner just to keep up with everyone else. We had to make some serious adjustments to the car during the race to try and make it turn in the corner like I needed."

A bad day turned worse as Gordon was spun in turn 1 by the No. 61 of Chad Chaffin, forcing him down pit road to repair the damage after backing the No. 7 Chevy into the SAFER barrier. After repairs were complete, Gordon returned to the track five-laps down to the leaders in 39th. With less than 100 laps to go, Gordon continued through the rest of the caution-littered race to post some of his fastest laps of the day.

Ultimately bringing it home in 32nd, Gordon's hopes of finishing the season out on the right foot still remain high.

"Going into the final race of the season, it's important to every team that they have a great finish and hopefully carry that momentum to Daytona next year. We'll be looking to do just."

Gordon and the No. 7 Menards/Energizer Chevy hit the road for the final time of 2006 NASCAR Nextel Cup season to Miami-Homestead Speedway and the Ford 400.

-credit: rgm

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Robby Gordon