Originally written on Race Review Online  |  Last updated 1/10/14
  Photo Courtesy of www.autoweek.com Daytona Beach, Fla- One subject that’s not debated upon much in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series garage is that Jeff Gordon is a legend. Gordon, has won four Sprint Cup titles during his career as he embarks on his 22nd full time season in the series. He’s set many records and has won 88 races in 724 career starts. Gordon though knows his time is running out on another title and knows he needs to get a better start to the season if he wants to do so. He thinks better setups at the beginning of the season would help propel him in the standings and not have to play catch up midway through the year. “Setups, mainly setups,” said the 42-year old.  “You know, just on paper seeing things that are in the sim, in the wind tunnel, that you think are going to be something that separates you.  You go, aww, man, that setup just looks amazing on paper, we’re going to go super fast with this, and then you get to the track and there’s a sequence of bumps that are upsetting the car such that you’re not able to take advantage of that aerodynamic package that you guys came up with.” Gordon has won the Daytona 500 four times, but hasn’t found victory lane in the season opening race since 2005. He has only one top 10 finish in the “Great American Race” since that last win. His last four finishes in this race are 26th, 28th, 40th and 20th. He’s absolutely right about struggling to start the year off. It’s not just Daytona where the struggles are at in the beginning of the season. Between Daytona and the Charlotte race at the end of May each season between 2010-2013, he only has 15 top 10′s in those 48 races. He had only two top 10′s in the first 10 races last year. He knows he has to figure it out earlier than having to resort to a summer run. “It’s mainly just been saying, okay, we’ve got this that is not something that’s proven, not something that we’ve raced before, but we think it’s going to be really fast, and you try to race it and then you go, okay, didn’t work this weekend, maybe we try it next week, and then you find yourself saying, oh, maybe it’s not as good as we thought it was, and let’s start rethinking it.  And all of a sudden you’re 10, 12 races into the season and you’re behind.” This may be the year Gordon gets out of that slump. He had eight top 10′s and 12 top 15 place finishes in the final 13 races last year. He was one of the hottest drivers outside of Jimmie Johnson to close out the season. That’s what excites him about this year. Watch out for Gordon next month. Eric Smith covers all forms of motorsports for Race Review Online. He’s recognized as an accredited member of the media by both NASCAR and IndyCar. Follow him on Twitter @ericsportsguru The post NASCAR: Jeff Gordon Hoping for a Better Start to the 2014 Season appeared first on Race Review Online.
PLAYERS: Jeff Gordon
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