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NASCAR Cup: Jeff Gordon primed to take over Hendrick Motorsports

FORT WORTH, TX – NOVEMBER 06: Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet, looks on during Service King qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on November 6, 2015 in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images for Texas Motor Speedway)

By AMANDA VINCENT

NASCAR team owner Rick Hendrick isn’t planning on stepping down from running his Hendrick Motorsports team in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series anytime soon, but he does have a plan in place for when he does — Jeff Gordon.

In an article on the aging of NASCAR’s top team owners by Autoweek, Hendrick’s plans for his race team were revealed.

“That’s the way we’re going,” Hendrick said. “Whenever I finally step away, it’ll be Jeff Gordon in my place.”

Hendrick, 69, though, joked that he at least as to stick around a year past fellow-team owner Roger Penske’s retirement. Penske is 81 and shows no signs of retirement anytime soon, either.

Putting Gordon at the helm wasn’t Hendrick’s original plan. The original plan was for Hendrick’s son, Ricky Hendrick, to inherit the family business. Ricky Hendrick, though, died in a plane crash en route to a race in 2004.

“We had just built a building with an office for Ricky near mine,” Rick Hendrick said. “He loved [the business] and was good at it, because he’d grown up with it. He was good with sponsors, and he knew the racing part because he’d raced. I was about to step away and let him take over. That was the plan that never happened.”

Gordon’s entire Cup Series driving career was spent at Hendrick Motorsports, where he won 93 of 805 races, third on the all-time wins list behind NASCAR Hall of Famers Richard Petty and David Pearson. He also won four championships, fourth on that all-time list behind Petty, Dale Earnhardt and HMS driver Jimmie Johnson. Gordon is slated for inductions into the NASCAR Hall of Fame and National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame in January.

Gordon has been an advisor for Hendrick Motorsports since his official retirement as a NASCAR driver at the end of the 2015 season.

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Posted by on December 13, 2018. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,Monster Energy NASCAR Cup,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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