Jeff Gordon is widely viewed as one of the greatest drivers in NASCAR history. Gordon spent his entire Cup Series career with Rick Hendrick racing for Hendrick Motorsports, where he experienced tremendous success. His dominance on the track guided Hendrick to make a strong statement about the No. 24 driver.
Jeff Gordon’s incredible NASCAR career
Jeff Gordon started racing at a young age, working his way toward an opportunity to get into NASCAR.
Gordon spent his first two years with Bill Davis Racing in the Busch Series before breaking into the scene with Rick Hendrick under Hendrick Motorsports. He took full advantage of that situation by putting together a NASCAR career that extended over two decades.
In 25 years as a Cup Series driver, he won four championships, garnered 93 wins, 81 pole positions, and won three Daytona 500 races. Gordon has also completed three career Grand Slams and is third on the all-time Cup Series wins list.
All that guided Rick Hendrick to make a strong proclamation about the Hall of Fame driver.
NASCAR legend Rick Hendrick believes signing Jeff Gordon is ‘best decision I ever made’
Rick Hendrick has remained heavily involved in NASCAR since the 1980s, which has seen him make numerous high-profile decisions.
However, none of them came close to his choice to ink Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon to a deal. During an interview with ESPN in 2011, Hendrick went as far as to say the move was the business best he’s ever made.
“When I first met him in the flesh I sat there and stared at him like, ‘You’re too young and little to drive one of these cars,’ ” Hendrick said. “He had that little mustache. It blew me away how young he looked.
“I’ve actually got a video of him standing by a Sprint Car. I think he was 13 or 14, and he looked like he was 8. But signing him, that was the best decision I ever made.”
From the moment he signed Gordon to a contract, he quickly became a significant part of the company’s success. He skyrocketed into dominating the track as he won three Cup Series championships in his first six full seasons.
Gordon’s success helped place Hendrick Motorsports on the map as one of the sport’s biggest brands. He has also been a tremendous ambassador for NASCAR and helped it grow significantly, which has greatly benefited everyone.
All that gives Hendrick no hesitation to state adding Gordon to his garage the best decision of his NASCAR career.
Connection to Hendrick Motorsports remains strong
As Jeff Gordon moved into retirement after the 2016 season, he has maintained a prominent role within the sport.
Beyond his position in the booth with Fox’s NASCAR coverage, he’s kept a strong tie to Hendrick Motorsports. Gordon holds an ownership stake with the company with his reported “lifetime agreement” as an equity partner for his No. 24 DuPont Automotive Finishes Chevrolet team.
Rick Hendrick has also voiced that he plans on handing over control of Hendrick Motorsports once he decides to step into retirement. The 71-year-old hasn’t indicated when that will be, but it’s an imminent move that Gordon has voiced excitement toward.
“I love the business side of it,” said Gordon via NASCAR.com. “If that day ever comes, I would be truly honored even though I don’t think I could do the job that he’s done. I would be truly honored to take that role on.”
Gordon’s future with NASCAR remains bright, which will see him forever tied to Hendrick Motorsports.