Talladega, AL - Jeff Gordon, No. 24 DuPont/Pepsi Impala SS, only needed to lead one lap in the UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega Superspeedway - the last one - to capture his fifth win of the 2007 season and sweep both races at the legendary Alabama race...
Talladega, AL - Jeff Gordon, No. 24 DuPont/Pepsi Impala SS, only needed to lead one lap in the UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega Superspeedway - the last one - to capture his fifth win of the 2007 season and sweep both races at the legendary Alabama race track.
In reality, Gordon only led the last 1/3 of the final lap around the 2.666-mile tri-oval to score his sixth win at Talladega, more than any other active driver.
Other than one round of green flag pit stops, Gordon spend the majority of the 188-lap/500-mile race running around 35th position to save his equipment and be ready for the blast to the front of the field at the end.
Gordon's win in round four of the 2007 Chase for the Nextel Cup, race 30 of the 36-race NASCAR Nextel Cup Series (NNCS) season, is the 12th superspeedway victory and 80th win of his career.
The 2007 sweep at Talladega by the four-time NNCS champion is the first since Dale Earnhardt, Jr., No. 8 Budweiser Chevrolet did it in 2002.
It is the 21st victory of the season for the Bowtie Brigade in 30 NNCS races and the 11th win by an Impala SS driver in the 14 races for the new generation race car so far this season.
Gordon's Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe's Impala SS, led five Team Chevy Impala SS drivers to top-10 finishes behind Gordon with a second-place finish. The defending NNCS champion is second in the standings, just nine points behind the Gordon with six races remaining in the season. Johnson led twice for a total of six laps in the race.
Denny Hamlin, No. 11 FedEx Ground Impala SS, finished fourth despite receiving damage to right rear quarter panel during a late-race multi-car incident. Hamlin now sits ninth in the standings, 262 points down to the leader. Hamlin had his Impala SS race car at the front of the field five times during the race for a total of 40 laps.
Casey Mears, No. 25 National Guard/GMAC Impala SS, finished sixth, his fifth top-five finish of the year. Mears is in a tight battle for the coveted 13th place in the standings, currently in 15th spot.
Two-time NNCS champion Tony Stewart, No. 20 Home Depot Impala SS, finished eighth in the final order after leading four times during the afternoon for a total of 38 laps. Stewart if fourth in the Chase standings, 154 points behind leader Gordon.
Tony Raines, No. 96 DLP HDTV Impala SS, scored a season-best ninth in the final finishing order to give Team Chevy six drivers in the top-10.
Clint Bowyer, No. 07 Jack Daniel's Impala SS, finished 11th to stay strong in the championship battle. He continues third in the standings, just 63 points down to the leader. Bowyer was credited with leading once for one lap to collect the valuable five bonus points.
Kevin Harvick, No. 29 Shell-Pennzoil Impala SS, finished 20th after losing a cylinder with 50 laps remaining in the race. Despite running on only seven cylinders, Harvick stayed on the lead lap, was credited with leading one lap during the race to collect the valuable bonus points. He is fifth in the Chase standings, 165 points out of first place.
Kyle Busch, No. 5 Kellogg's/CARQUEST Impala SS, finished 38th after being involved in an 11-car, multi-car accident on lap 144 of the 188-lap race. He dropped to eighth in the Chase, 260 points behind HMS teammate Gordon.
Martin Truex, Jr., No. 1 Bass Pro Shops/Track Boats Impala SS, retired from the race on lap 113 with motor failure. He is now 10th in the standings, 300 points out of first.
Jeff Burton, No. 31 AT&T Impala SS, was the first car in the garage when the motor let go on lap 91. Burton is now 12th in the Chase standings, 336 points down to Gordon.
-credit: gm racing