Texas: Robby Gordon preview

The fender rubbing and scrubbing started early at Martinsville Speedway, and unfortunately, Robby Gordon and the No. 7 Menards/Pittsburgh Paints Chevrolet were untimely victims of the fray. Heading to the Lone Star State this week, Gordon and team...

The fender rubbing and scrubbing started early at Martinsville Speedway, and unfortunately, Robby Gordon and the No. 7 Menards/Pittsburgh Paints Chevrolet were untimely victims of the fray. Heading to the Lone Star State this week, Gordon and team will debut the No. 7 Jim Beam Black Chevrolet paint scheme and are betting on a repeat Atlanta performance with the return of the rapid chassis.

Jim Beam Black Fast Facts:

* Back in Black - Jim Beam Black will take the spotlight for the first time this year with the No. 7 Chevy at Texas Motor Speedway. Race fans can also enjoy the limelight for a day by entering the inaugural Jim Beam 1100 sweepstakes. The ultimate racing adventure includes an all expense paid trip to see the Indy 500 and the Coca Cola 600 - all on the same day. The winner and three guests will win two nights in Indianapolis, VIP Suite passes to the Indy 500 and Coca Cola 600, chartered plan transportation between the races, a night in Charlotte, airfare to and from the races and $500 spending money. Enter for a chance to win at www.jimbeam.com <http://www.jimbeam.com/> , www.nascar.com <http://www.nascar.com/> and www.ESPN.com or at local spirits and wine retailers. Menards, Harrah's and CarLoan.com will serve as associate sponsors.

* TV Stars for a Good Cause - Robby Gordon and Michael Andretti in Jim Beam PSA Commercial - Jim Beam bourbon recently announced the launch of its 2006 Public Service Announcement (PSA) to raise awareness of the company's drink smart(r) social responsibility platform. Through drink smart(r), the company reminds consumers of the basic principles for making responsible decisions concerning alcohol: 1) if you're under 21, don't drink; 2) if you're of legal purchase age and choose to drink, do so in moderation; 3) and never drive drunk. The television PSA, featuring NASCAR Nextel Cup driver and owner Robby Gordon and Indy Racing League driver and co-owner Michael Andretti of Andretti Green Racing, reinforces the drink smart(r) messages and the importance of making smart decisions about alcohol. Using a victory lane backdrop, both Gordon and Andretti reinforce the Jim Beam drink smart(r) messages of making smart choices "on and off the track."

* Meals On Wheels - Gordon will make a special delivery to a homebound person on Thursday, April 6 in Ft. Worth in his No. 7 Harrah's Chevrolet via police escort. He will assist Carla Jutson in delivering the 10 millionth meal served in Tarrant County since Meals on Wheels of Tarrant County began meal deliveries in 1973. In 2002, Harrah's became a national prime sponsor of the Meals On Wheels Association of America's "March For Meals" campaign, committing $1 million over three years and an additional $1 million from 2005 to 2009. Since 2004, Harrah's Entertainment and Gordon have teamed up to aid Harrah's nationwide efforts to drive public awareness for the association's campaign. This is the first of six deliveries in race markets this season.

* Rapid Ride - Gordon will run Chassis No. 103 at Texas. The chassis was lightning fast in its last appearance on track at Atlanta Motor Speedway and scored a 12th-place finish at Vegas.

* Texas Two Step - Having raced in two NASCAR series at Texas, Gordon boasts one top-five finish in the Busch Series and has captured one top-20 and two top-25 finishes in Nextel Cup at the intermediate speedway track.

* Point Standings - The No. 7 team is currently in 27th-place in Nextel Cup Series points going into the seventh race of the season. Gordon and team lost seven positions after being taken out of competition less than two laps into last week's Martinsville race.

* Signature Sightings - Gordon will hold two autograph sessions at the souvenir trailer on Saturday, April 8 from 1:15 to 2 p.m. and Sunday, April 9 from 9:30 to 10:15 a.m.

Robby Gordon's Quotes on Texas:

"We're on equal footing with every team inside the top-35 in the garage again this weekend and are looking forward to being able to start off practice focusing on race setup. We've got to do a better job in qualifying and give ourselves a better shot at staying out of trouble early on at each race. Obviously we'll be trying to find the same balance we found at Atlanta and hope to be the fastest car on track again. We've got a great baseline to start with and should be able to make our way into the top-10 pretty quickly on Sunday."

Crew Chief Greg Erwin's Quotes on Texas:

"I'm looking very forward to getting back to Texas, and hopefully, we'll have some good weather again this weekend. We're taking the car we ran at Atlanta and Vegas which were two really strong runs for us, and Texas has a similar setup in race configuration. But we're hoping to throw a little something different at it to help our qualifying effort. Robby knows we've been in a bit of a slide here these last few weeks, so we're going to be counting on him to bring his game face on Friday and we're going to do everything we can to avoid any mistakes on our part. But we have to qualify better."

How do you get the team back on track after a heartbreaking incident like Martinsville?

"I have to fix myself first. I'm still pretty disappointed with Martinsville, and it's obvious we took a giant hit in the points. The only approach is to just forget about Sunday, and that's the approach that I use with the crew. We put it behind us and move on. It was out of our control, and we have to put all our efforts into this weekend and come out swinging. We're focused on putting together a strong practice plan this week and getting all the springs and shocks prepared and every possible piece and part that we might think about putting on the car during practice."

-rgm

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Robby Gordon , Michael Andretti , Greg Erwin , Jim Beam