Jeff Gordon enters tomorrow’s Coca-Cola 600 sitting 12th in points. Despite a start to the 2013 season many did not see coming, considering he won the season finale last year at the Homestead-Miami Speedway, he remains confident in his team.
“We are off to a slow start, but I think as an organization we have the tools that it takes to make up those gaps. To get ourselves back into a position to win and I think we learned a lot from the All-Star Race. Had a pretty good car and didn’t show for it. There is no doubt I feel like we can be a threat in this one,” Gordon told reports Thursday from the Charlotte Motor Speedway.
For the longest race on the schedule, Gordon has a plan and experience on how to run the race.
“You used to be able to pace yourself you can’t do that anymore. You’ve got to have the car adjustable like you’ve always had to have it when the race starts. If it’s warm during the day the track is going to be slick and the balance is going to be different. The pace is going to pick up as the sun goes down. You’ve got to be able to be to be ready for those changes and that speed to pick up as well. That is why I love the All-Star Race it really tells us about the night conditions. We don’t get any night practice so it’s the one practice that we have to know what the track should be like when the sun goes down,” he explained.
Even with all the planning teams do prior to a race, they still need to be ready to adjusted said plan during the course of the race.
“I think you have to have a plan for every race and try to understand what the challenges are and what you can somewhat expect from previous experience. And because this is such a long race, maybe instead of breaking it down in half, you could break it down into thirds. Even with all the well-laid-out plans it doesn’t seem to make it all go smoothly. Even with Ray (Evernham) we would kind of know things but we would still have to adjust as we go. And that’s the way we still approach it today,” Gordon commented.
Jeff Gordon and his crew will try for his third Coca-Cola 600 victory Sunday night and will certainly be up for the challenge.