September News

Avoiding The Carnage
FEDERATED 400 - Richmond International Raceway. Finish: 16th

Jeff Gordon's night at Richmond International Raceway was an exercise in avoiding danger and carnage on the track. The Federated 400 set a record with 16 caution flags. After running as high as 4th, Gordon posted a 16th place finish. It was his 5th top-20 finish in 6 races this year.

Gordon started 11th and dropped a spot to 12th prior to the first caution for Ryan Blaney's wall contact on lap 14. He restarted in 13th on lap 18 and took 12th from Jimmie Johnson on lap 30. On lap 58, he passed a fading Kasey Kahne to take 11th place. However, Joey Logano slipped past Gordon to send him back to 12th just one lap later. The next caution came on lap 85 for AJ Allemdinger's spin on the fronstretch. Pit stops followed with Gordon restarting 13th on lap 90. Gordon struggled on the outside line following contact from Ryan Newman after the restart. He dropped to 19th prior to a caution for Chase Elliott's cut tire on lap 95. Gordon came to pit road for sheet metal repairs under the caution flag. Gordon restarted 23rd on lap 99 and re-entered the top-20 on lap 107. By lap 115, he had advanced up to 18th place on fresher tires than the drivers ahead of him. Five laps later, he moved into 13th place. By the 150-lap mark, he had advanced to 11th place and was tracking down Kevin Harvick to enter the top-10. After Harvick passed Carl Edwards, Gordon followed him past to move up to 10th on lap 165.

Two laps later, he took 9th from Harvick. As the 200-lap mark approached, Gordon took 8th place from Kyle Busch. He came to pit road for a green flag pit stop on lap 187 and cycled through in 6th place. The next caution came on lap 202 for Jimmie Johnson's cut tire and wall contact. Gordon held 6th place through the pit stops. On the restart he dropped to 9th when Jamie McMurray and Kyle Busch went by. He dropped to 11th on lap 220 while battling tight handling. A debris caution on lap 223 slowed the field. Pit stops ensued with Gordon restarting 12th on lap 228. He quickly entered the top-10 on the outside line. Gordon took 9th from Joey Logano prior to a caution for David Ragan's cut tire on lap 245. He restarted 7th on lap 251 and moved to 6th prior to a caution for Paul Menard's wreck. Pit stops followed with Gordon restarting 4th on lap 270. He slipped to 6th after the restart. A caution for Casey Mears' spin on lap 279 Gordon stayed on the track and moved up to 5th for the restart on lap 285. He dropped to 7th after the restart as Kyle Busch and Brad Keselowski went by. A caution for Michael Annett's crash slowed the field on lap 291. Pit stops followed with Gordon restarting 14th on lap 296 after 7 drivers stayed out.

Traffic hindered Gordon's progress, but he moved steadily up to 13th with 85 laps to go. Carl Edwards' half spin brought out the caution with 80 to go. Gordon came to pit road and restarted in 9th place. He dropped to 11th within two laps of the restart. A caution flag with 73 to go saw Gordon stay on the track with the rest of the leaders. He dropped to 15th after the restart prior to a caution for Matt Kenseth's cut tire with 64 to go. Gordon came to pit road for his final set of sticker tires. He restarted in 29th place. The green didn't stay out for long as the caution waved for an incident involving David Ragan and AJ Allmendinger. Gordon moved up to 24th for the restart with 50 to go. A caution with 47 to go for Matt DiBenedetto's cut tire brought several cars to pit road. Gordon restarted in 22nd place with 40 to go. A major wreck on the backstretch with 37 to go eliminated Ryan Newman, Tony Stewart, Brian Scott, and Dylan Lupton. A half hour red flag delay ensued to clean up the track.

Gordon restarted in 10th after several cars came to pit road. After the restart, Gordon dropped back to 20th place with 25 to go while dealing with a flat spot on a tire after having to avoid the melee that created the red flag. He regrouped to move up to 15th in the closing stages. With 2 to go, Regan Smith crashed entering turn 1, which brought a green/white/checkered finish. Gordon came to pit road for tires and restarted in 16th place, where he eventually finished the event.

Ghost Night
SOUTHERN 500 - Darlington Raceway. Finish: 11th

Jeff Gordon's fifth start in the #88 Chevrolet was a constant fight under the lights at Darlington Raceway. The "Gray Ghost" throwback paint scheme on the #88 Chevrolet honored Buddy Baker's 1980 Daytona 500 victory. After an ill-timed caution flag trapped Gordon two laps down early in the Southern 500, he battled back to finish 14th. It was his 4th top-15 finish in 5 races this year in relief of Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Gordon started 15th and held that spot for the opening 30 laps. He dropped to 17th on lap 31 when Jamie McMurray and Ryan Blaney went by. One lap later, he slipped to 18th when Greg Biffle passed. On lap 32, Gordon dropped to 20th while battling a tight handling condition. He came to pit road for a green flag pit stop on lap 47. He advanced to 18th following the cycle of pit stops. However, he dropped back to 20th by lap 60. Ricky Stenhouse went by on lap 65 to move Gordon down to 21st place. On lap 68, race leader Kevin Harvick put Gordon a lap down. He came to pit road for a green flag stop on lap 92. The first caution waved on lap 95 for Trevor Bayne's spin coming off turn 4. The caution flag trapped Gordon 2 laps down. He took the wave-around and restarted 1 lap down in 23rd place. A caution for Brian Scott's spin on lap 114 brought pit stops.

Gordon stayed out longer under a cycle of green flag stops in the hopes of catching a caution to get back on the lead lap. The caution didn't come and Gordon went a lap down on lap 181 when Harvick went by. Gordon came to pit road for tires and a chassis adjustment on lap 187. He returned to the event in 24th place, 2 laps down. The next caution came on lap 204 for Brian Scott's crash courtesy of Tony Stewart's front bumper. Gordon stayed out for the wave-around and restarted 1 lap down in 22nd place. Jimmie Johnson's spin and wall contact on lap 212 brought out the caution. Gordon came to pit road and restarted in 21st place. He took 20th from Chris Buescher on lap 226. Five laps later, he passed Greg Biffle for 19th place and became the first driver 1 lap down. Jeffrey Earnhardt's wall contact brought the caution on lap 250, which allowed Gordon to get back on the lead lap.

Following pit stops, Gordon restarted in 18th place on lap 255. He dropped to 19th prior to a caution for Greg Biffle's wall contact on lap 260. Gordon gained a spot on pit road and restarted 17th on lap 265. He took 16th from Kurt Busch on lap 277 prior to a caution for AJ Allmendinger's spin. Pit stops followed with Gordon restarting 15th. He moved to 14th when Brad Keselowski pitted for a loose wheel with 62 to go. Two laps later he took 13th from Kyle Busch. With 51 laps to go, he passed Kurt Busch to run in 12th place. The next caution came on lap 317 for Tony Stewart's blown engine. After pit stops, Gordon restarted 11th with 44 laps to go. The next caution came for Kurt Busch's wreck with 40 to go. Gordon came to pit road for tires and restarted in 14th place with 34 to go. Aric Almirola's wreck with 18 laps to go brought out the caution. Pit stops followed with Gordon restarting in 13th place with 12 laps to go. He finished the event in 14th place. It was his 11th top-15 finish in his last 13 starts at Darlington.

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