Found September 13, 2013 on
NASCAR made what it called an unprecedented decision Friday afternoon, adding Jeff Gordon as the 13th participant in the Chase for the Sprint Cup, which begins on Sunday at Chicagoland Speedway.
NASCAR decided that a series of actions by Michael Waltrip Racing, Penske Racing and Front Row Motorsports unfairly denied Gordon a spot in the Chase and so after nearly a full day of meetings at the track, Gordon is now officially back in business.
Stripping aside all the emotion and all the controversy of NASCAR's decision, one fundamental question remains: Now that he's in the Chase, is Gordon a legitimate contender to finally win his fifth Sprint Cup championship and his first since 2001?
While anything is possible, certainly, both short- and longer-term history -- and more importantly, cold, hard numbers -- suggest Gordon's odds of a miracle ending to the season are very slim indeed.
This year's edition of the Chase is the 10th year for NASCAR's playoff format. In the first nine editions of the Chase, the champion has come from the top four seeds seven times. The only exceptions were in 2004, when Kurt Busch came from the No. 7 seed to win the first Chase, and two years ago, when Tony Stewart made his incredible run, winning five of 10 Chase races.
Gordon will be one of seven drivers who begins this year's Chase in the very back of the pack with no bonus points, while leader Matt Kenseth has 15 and Kyle Busch and Jimmie Johnson have 12 each. It's not that the points gap is that big; it's that there are so many people to pass.
And speaking of Johnson, Gordon has not finished ahead of his Hendrick Motorsports teammate since Johnson's rookie season of 2002, when Gordon ended the year a mere seven points ahead of Johnson. In the next full 10 seasons, Johnson finished in front of Gordon each time.
This year has been more of the same so far.
At the end of the 26-race regular season, Johnson had four race victories, nine top-five and 15 top-10 finishes, along with 841 points. Gordon was winless, with five top fives, 12 top 10s and 750 points. Gordon was nearly two full races behind Johnson in points before the points were reset for the Chase. And Gordon had five DNFs to one for Johnson.
Can Gordon do it? Last week at Richmond, Gordon admitted it's been a challenging season.
"There's no doubt that our confidence has been tested, mine personally," Gordon said. "There's no doubt that this team is not riding high like some of the other teams that are out there. That's why we're 11th or wherever we're at in points right now. ... That doesn't change what our mission is."
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Jeff Gordon has been added to the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season Chase, and will be competing for the championship, NASCAR announced on Friday. Brian France announced that he had the authority to change the rules, and he did just that, adding a 13th driver to the original 12 spot Chase field. NASCAR met with the media on Friday afternoon after concluding a second investigation into...
Rick Hendrick was relieved when the news broke on Friday that Jeff Gordon would be added to the 2013 Chase for the Sprint Cup field.
After all the drama surrounding the finish of last weekend's race at Richmond International Raceway, the team owner of NASCAR's juggernaut operation commended the sanctioning body for deciphering the madness.
"I think NASCAR, I think...
Jeff Gordon believes he and his No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports team should be in the Chase for the Sprint Cup this year, regardless of the outcome of NASCAR's investigation into communications Saturday night between Penske Motorsports and Front Row Motorsports at the end of the race at Richmond International Raceway.
"I haven't heard the audio; I heard about it,"...
It has taken a week to get this Chase ironed out but today NASCAR has added driver Jeff Gordon to the Chase. You read this right, Jeff Gordon will be the 13th driver in the race and he will qualify for the Championship this year. This was an unprecedented decision made by NASCAR, they said “Due to the totality of the events that were outside of Jeff Gordon’s issues, we’re...
“I drive fast-y call me Jeff Gordon” –Nelly
Jeff Gordon is so big that he’s got much more than “crossover appeal.” With endorsements and a public profile like Jeff Gordon, even the St. Louis hip-hop artist Nelly admires him. And that’s why NASCAR made sure to not open up another spot for Jeff Gordon in the Chase for the Sprint Cup, but to actually ADD another slot to...
NASCAR added Jeff Gordon today as the 13th driver in the Chase for the Sprint Cup. It was an unprecedented move following one of the most controversial weeks in NASCAR history. Gordon and Ryan Newman were initially left out after Clint Boyer and Michael Waltrip Racing manipulated the outcome of the Richmond race in order to get Martin Truex Jr into the Chase field. NASCAR at first...
Rick Hendrick said he'd never seen the NASCAR brass reverse an important ruling during his 30-plus years in the sport.
But NASCAR's most successful team owner found plenty to like in the move, which restored driver Jeff Gordon to the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship after he failed to qualify in last week's scandal-plagued race at Richmond.
Joliet, IL- Jeff Gordon was given a gift Friday afternoon at Chicagoland Speedway when NASCAR adding him to the 2013 Chase field.
The four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion raced his way into the Chase inside of 10 laps-to-go last Saturday night at the Richmond International Raceway. After being two laps down mid-race he fought back and was in position to make it in.
Before NASCAR's announcement to add the No. 24 team into the Chase for the Sprint Cup field, the team's crew chief remained optimistic that justice would be served.
Alan Gustafson knew that "with less than seven laps" remaining in the race -- or when Clint Bowyer's spin ignited the final caution -- Jeff Gordon was in the Chase. Gustafson was aware of where...
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While there is rain in the forecast for Sunday's race at Chicagoland Speedway, will it be the clouds of controversy from the last that inevitably overshadow the Chase for the Sprint Cup?
NASCAR spent the last week cleaning up the mess after competitors played hard and fast with the rules. The result? A finish that wasn't official until Monday night - nearly 48 hours after...
Martin Truex Jr. will not be in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Chase this season. NASCAR made the decision to penalize the No. 56 car after questionable activities from Richmond.
Enter Ryan Newman.
Then radio communication between David Gilliland and his spotter suggested that Penske Racing may had been working on a deal with Front Row Racing to allow Joey Logano to gain a position...
The NASCAR Sprint Cup series Chase starts this weekend at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, IL with the running of the Geico 400. Only 12 drivers have the chance at the points they earn counting towards the Championship, but that does not mean there will not be 31 other drivers looking to take home the win.
Below we have compiled five drivers to watch for this weekend at Chicagoland...
NASCAR officials met with Front Row Motorsports crew chief Frank Kerr and spotter David Keith at Chicagoland Speedway on Friday morning to discuss Saturday's incidents at Richmond International Raceway.
A separate meeting was held with Penske Racing vice president Bud Denker, competition director Travis Geisler, vice president of operations Michael Nelson, crew chief Todd Gordon...