Jeff Gordon strung together an impressive professional racing career with NASCAR that spans over two decades. Gordon accomplished nearly every feat possible throughout his time on the track. However, there is a particular circumstance that could pull him out of retirement.
Jeff Gordon’s legendary NASCAR career
Jeff Gordon established a legacy in NASCAR as one of the sports greatest drivers through his two-plus decade career.
Gordon is one of the most well-respected drivers in the industries behind his four Cup Series championships, ranking third with 93 career wins and 81 pole positions leads. He still holds the NASCAR record with at least one pole win in 23 straight seasons, while his 12 wins on the restrictor-plate track are the most ever.
Gordon also won the Daytona 500 three times and completed the career Grand Slam three times. The 2019 NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee accomplished it all, but there remains the outside pull to see him get back behind the wheel. Subsequently, Gordon has laid out what it will take for him to race again.
Jeff Gordon lays out what can fuel a return back to a NASCAR track
Since stepping away from the race track after the 2016 season, Jeff Gordon has remained around the sports in varying capacities.
With that has come some lingering dialogue around him getting back into his No. 24 car at least one more time. In January 2019, Gordon laid out that he is always open to getting back behind the wheel, but it would take particular circumstances. (H/T USA TODAY Sports)
“I’m always open-minded to the right circumstances, the right track, the right group of drivers,” Gordon told For The Win by phone Friday.
“I can’t help but want to go out there and compete against some of my older competitors, whether it be a Mark Martin or a Rusty Wallace or Tony Stewart or Dale Jr. I think under the right circumstances, like an exhibition race.”
Gordon has no desire to race anywhere near a full-time schedule or maybe even more than once, but the framework is there to make it happen. Keep in mind; he drove in eight races during the 2016 campaign to fill in for Dale Earnhardt Jr., who missed the second half of the year due to concussion symptoms.
That situation alone may have got his internal juices going to get back in the car for at least one more race.
Will it ever happen?
Jeff Gordon still holds a strong passion and connection for auto racing and NASCAR as he’s an announcer for Fox NASCAR and a top executive for Hendrick Motorsports.
He at least holds the desire to stay around the sport and business, so the possibility of him racing again remains. Although the idea of putting together an exhibition event for retired drivers is quite intriguing, Gordon voiced that there are many variables at play that would need to be settled first.
“It depends on the cars, it depends on the track, it depends on the competitors,” he said. “But I would be open-minded to it.”
Gordon isn’t actively pushing for another race, but if the parameters are met, it looks like his name can be thrown into the hat. It’s not out of the realm of possibility that other retired drivers such as Dale Earnhardt Jr., Tony Stewart, Rusty Wallace, or Mark Martin wouldn’t give it one more go.
Only time will tell if that situation will ever come to fruition.