Clock Is Ticking

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If ever there was a track on the schedule that was a tonic for what ails Jeff Gordon, it's Martinsville Speedway.

The four-time NEXTEL Cup champion has 72 career wins, six of them coming at the Martinsville half-mile. His lifetime stats at the Virginia short track are nothing less than impressive with five poles, 13 top fives and 19 top 10s to go along with his win total.

He swept both Cup events at Martinsville back in 2003 and has a chance to duplicate that effort again this year with a win in Sunday's Subway 500, which would bookend his April victory.

Not only would another Martinsville victory boost Gordon and the No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports team's confidence in what has been nothing less than a disappointing season, it would add another of Martinsville's famous grandfather clocks to Gordon's collection.

"I definitely want another grandfather clock," said Gordon. "And I'd like to get Steve (Letarte) his first win as a crew chief.

"We always seem to run well here, and a lot of the credit goes to the DuPont crew. They have given me great cars and haven't given up when we've faced some obstacles."

One of those obstacles came in the 2004 spring race when the track literally took a bite out of Gordon's shot at another victory. A piece of concrete came out of the racing surface severely damaging Gordon's car and taking him out of contention.

He experienced trouble early in the April Martinsville race when a vibration was detected less than 50 laps into the 500 circuit grind. Down three laps, Gordon was able to work himself back to the lead lap and went on to score what turned out to be an emotional win for the Hendrick organization in its first visit to Martinsville since last year's tragic plane crash that took the lives of ten family members and friends.

"That was an emotional victory and an emotional day," Gordon said. "It was an honor to get the win for Hendrick Motorsports. Those we lost were definitely on our mind, and our thoughts of them are never going to go away."

Photos

  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • From the Archives: Richmond
  • Remembering Steve Byrnes
  • Remembering Steve Byrnes
  • Remembering Steve Byrnes
  • Remembering Steve Byrnes
  • Remembering Steve Byrnes
  • Remembering Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • Food City 500 in Support of Steve Byrnes
  • From the Archives: Bristol
  • From the Archives: Bristol
  • From the Archives: Bristol
  • From the Archives: Bristol

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