Chat with Jeff Gordon
Gordon has finished in the year in the top 10 in points 16 out of his 18 years in NASCAR.
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, four-time NASCAR champion, and driver of the No. 24 DuPont Chevy, Jeff Gordon stops by to chat about this season's Chase. Gordon currently sits in 11th place following his 24th-place finish last weekend in Chicago, the first race of the Chase. This week, NASCAR travels to New Hampshire (Sunday, 2 p.m. ET, ESPN).
After just one win combined in the 2008, 2009 and 2010 seasons, Gordon already has three wins in 2011. His 10 top-5 finishes this year is fourth best on the circuit. Earlier this season, he won his 85th career race, good for third all-time in NASCAR history.
Gordon has done well at New Hampshire Motor Speedway winning three times in his career. His 14 top-5 and 18 top-10 finishes are the most by a driver at the track.
Send your questions now and join Gordon Thursday at 11 a.m. ET!
Buzzmaster (11:01 AM)
We've got Jeff!
David (Tucson, AZ)
What racetrack in the chase schedule are looking foward to running at?
Jeff Gordon (11:02 AM)
I'm really looking forward to New Hampshire this weekend. It's a good track for us. I look forward to Martinsville. I look forward to anyone that we'll run good at, but those two stand out.
James (Rochester, NY)
Hey Jeff, What is your reaction to the first chase race in Chicago?
Jeff Gordon (11:03 AM)
Obviously, we had a very rough weekend, start to finish. We want to learn from it, but also move on as fast as we can and get the momentum back from going into the Chase.
Ryan (At school)
Hey Jeff, do you see this week being a huge week for you seeing that you already won here three times at New Hampshire and do you think you can make it a fourth time?
Jeff Gordon (11:04 AM)
I think we're capable of winning at a lot of different tracks this year. I always look forward to New Hampshire. With how Chicago went we have to put 9 great weekends together.
Kevin Osgood (Fairfield, CA)
Jeff, you're hands down the most charitable driver in NASCAR, nobody can argue that. You've done so many great things and helped many people. Recently you went to Africa, what are you planning to do next to help others? Good luck this weekend and for the rest of the season, go that championship! Go Big Daddy!!!Kevin
Jeff Gordon (11:05 AM)
We have our annual go-kart event coming up in Charlotte the week of the Charlotte race in October. Looking forward to that. As well as handing over the keys to a Corvette that we raffled off. And we're going back to Rwanda when the season's over.
How do you beat Jimmie Johnson this year for the Chase?
Jeff Gordon (11:06 AM)
Well, they're tough. They've proven that the last five years. We have the ability to learn from them, being teammates. But you can't focus on one team, one driver. There are several teams that can win. I think it's being the best you can be and live up to your potential. I think we've proven that this year. I think if we do that, we can live up to our full potential and beat the 48 and the others.
Donnie (Hamlin, NY)
Do you like the new points system so far?
Jeff Gordon (11:06 AM)
I do. So far. It's pretty easy to follow. I feel like it doesn't change how we're racing. We're still out there battling for wins and getting the points. I'm enjoying it. Hopefully the fans are too.
How much of the fuel savings during a race are due to the car and how much is the driver?
Jeff Gordon (11:08 AM)
A lot of it has to do with your speed. The slower you go, the better fuel mileage you'll get. It's also in how the engine is tuned. A lot factors into it. When you go into fuel conservation and the driver has a big role and can save 5-7% on a given run if they do it right.
ARe you a fan of fuel mileage races?
Jeff Gordon (11:09 AM)
Fuel mileage races are all about how the cautions fall. It's not like people are winning it on fuel mileage alone. They're taking risks. I'm a fan of exciting races. Sometimes fuel mileage can be exciting. The fastest cars don't always win. When it goes in your favor, you like it. When it goes against you, you hate it.
Jeff, I've been a huge fan ever since I was little. How are you feeling going into New Hampshire?
Jeff Gordon (11:10 AM)
Obviously, things didn't go well for us in Chicago and we're disappointed with that. But we're very excited going into NH. We had a good meeting this week. I look at the races going into Chicago and we were a good team going into it and we're that same team today.
Amazing to see how some people have jumped off the Jeff Gordon bandwagon after only one bad race. Does one race really mean that much?
Jeff Gordon (11:11 AM)
I can't say it was our best performance, so the critics have their opinion and their point. To me, it has as much to do with how we qualified and track position as anything else. The tire issue set us back. Fuel mileage wise, we look back on it and we could have done that last run a little bit different to have some better results. But if you look at the history, the chances of a caution coming out late and we had just had our car ready. We knew we were going to be short.
When the chase first started a few years back it seemed like every driver could afford 1 mulligan and still seriously contend for the championship. With the new point system in place and the competition so fierce, what are your thoughts on the idea of every driver "having a mulligan" and still have a legitimate shot of winning the chase? How does your team plan to bounce back after last weeks rocky finish?
Jeff Gordon (11:12 AM)
I think you can. It's so competitive, it's tough not to have one bad race in a 10 race stretch. We can't afford to have another one. We're going to have to perform extremely well over the next 9 races to make up for it. But's its possible.
Jonathon Zgainer (Bellevue, NE)
Jeff, it seems like you have received a second wind in your driving career with this season and having Alan on the box. How much longer do you plan to race?
Jeff Gordon (11:13 AM)
As long as we're competitive. This year's been fantastic to win three races. To get 85 was huge for me and the 24 team. To have a team that's capable of winning races and the championship, that drives me. It puts that spark in my eye and that fire inside me to keep it going for a long time.
Do you like the Chase format of determining the series champ?
Jeff Gordon (11:15 AM)
I've always been a fan of it. I've always thought it's the most exciting way to finish the season. I wish they would have incorporated it a few seasons later, I would have had a couple more championships! It's a competitive and exciting way to decide the title for the drivers and the fans. I really like it.
Tony Barrios (San Juan, Puerto Rico)
Jeff Gordon and NASCAR Fan from Puerto Rico here! Do you think Talladega will play an even wilder card on this Chase with this new point system?
Jeff Gordon (11:16 AM)
It always seems to. It's so unpredictable at Talladega. They've put in some new rules on cooling and the plates. It's always the wild card in every Chase. It hasn't been a determining factor in the past, but it very well could be.
Jeff Gordon (11:16 AM)
Thanks for all of the great questions. We're ready to go get them this weekend in New Hampshire.