MRN Flashback: 2001 UAW-Daimler Chrysler 400
By: MRN Staff on March 5, 2014 | 5:34 P.M. EST
In March 2001, Gordon kicked his championship drive into high gear with a victory in the UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. (Getty Images)
On March 4, 2001, Jeff Gordon kicked his championship drive into high gear with a victory in the UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
It was the first of Gordon’s six wins that season which helped carry him to a fourth Cup Series crown in seven years.
After starting 24th, Gordon didn’t take his first lead until there were less than 50 laps remaining. But once he got the No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet out front, he showed the way for 33 of the final 43 laps – including the last 20 trips around the 1.5-mile oval.
Gordon beat pole sitter and runner-up Dale Jarrett to the finish by 1.5 seconds with Sterling Marlin, Johnny Benson and Todd Bodine completing the top five. Mark Martin led a race-high 54 laps and finished sixth.
Kevin Harvick was the highest-placed rookie in eighth, one of 14 drivers running on the lead lap with Gordon at the finish. The race featured 20 lead changes among 13 drivers, with six cautions for 25 laps.
By season’s end, Gordon opened up a commanding lead in the championship standings and won his fourth title by 349 points over second-place Tony Stewart.
Visit MRN.com on Thursday at 12:30 p.m. (ET) to hear the complete broadcast of the 2001 UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400, anchored by Barney Hall and Joe Moore. Motor Racing Network – "The Voice of NASCAR" – features a classic race each week on "Throwback Thursday" only at MRN.com.