Atlanta: Race Preview
JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 PANASONIC TOUGHBOOK CHEVROLET SS – POINTS LEADER
“There have been a lot of significant moments that have occurred during my career at Atlanta. My first Nationwide win, my first Cup start, the 85th win, winning some championships there and this upcoming start.
“In my first Cup start, I was completely unaware of what I was getting into. I had a great race car, but I did everything I possibly could do to ruin that opportunity!
“In 1998, we won at Atlanta and it was our 13th win to top off an incredible season. But in 1997, that race weekend was a difficult weekend for us. We were a little bit off on speed and then we had to go to a backup for the race, but we were able to get it done.
“What stands out the most to me about Atlanta is that it’s going to be really fast for qualifying, but then you’re going to slip and slide during the race. You have to manage wheel spin, you’ll have to manage tire wear, the team has to have a setup that is quick but doesn’t abuse the tires, and the driver has to drive it hard but not overdrive it. And you’re going to be searching all over the track for the groove that works best for you and your car.
“It’s just a fun, challenging track.”
At Atlanta, Jeff Gordon has 5 wins, 2 poles, 16 top fives, 26 top tens, has led 1,297 laps, has an average starting position of 12.1 and an average finishing position of 11.8.