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Event Preview Fact Sheet

Event/Date: Pontiac Excitement 400/May 3, 2003

Venue: Richmond (Va.) International Raceway

Robby Gordon’s NASCAR Winston Cup Performance History at Richmond International Raceway

Date

Start

Finish

Laps Completed/

Total Laps

Status

Money

09/07/02

11

28

397/400

Running

$66,686

05/04/02

37

34

309/400

Accident

66,081

09/09/00

DNQ

05/06/00

36

37

282/400

Brakes

23,350

09/06/97

4

42

7/400

Engine

22,185

03/02/97

24

28

396/400

Running

21,215

02/24/91

35

26

288/400

Running

3,525

TOTALS Avg. Start: 24.5 Avg. Finish: 32.5 Laps: 1,779/2,400 Money: $203,042

NASCAR Winston Cup Points Position: 16th

NOTES:

  • This Week’s Race Car (chassis No. 99) was last run at Darlington. Gordon also raced it at Phoenix, Atlanta and Richmond in the second half of the 2002 season.
  • The Cingular Wireless Chevrolet will carry a special orange “reverse” paint scheme this weekend at Richmond. The same paint scheme also will be run in The Winston Open and the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway.
  • Gordon will fly to Indianapolis immediately following Saturday’s race to begin preparations for Sunday’s opening practice for the Indianapolis 500. He is filling in for Dario Franchitti in the No. 27 Alpine/Archipelago/Motorola/Budweiser Dallara/Honda/Firestone for Andretti Green Racing.
  • The Pontiac Excitement 400 will be broadcast live on FX and MRN on Saturday, May 3 at 7:30 p.m. EST. Qualifying is scheduled for Friday, May 2 at 3:05 p.m. EST

ROBBY GORDON QUOTES:

“I’ve had good runs at Richmond but it always seems like something bad happens to me there. I always end up getting run over by someone or something. Last year in the first race, we were really good but ended up having a piece of debris shoot through the windshield and dash. We lost a lot of spots repairing that. In the September race, we again were very good and ran in the top 10 for a good while before NASCAR black-flagged us and we had to pit under green due to an engine problem late in the race. I was a bit confused over that deal because we were definitely maintaining the minimum speed. Like I said, it’s always something at Richmond.

“I’ve qualified fourth at Richmond and know the Cingular Wireless team can do just as well this time around. We have a handle on our short-track program lately and have a good package at those tracks. I’d put Richmond in the same league as Martinsville, Bristol and Loudon except that Richmond is a smoother track — it’s kind of a mix of those tracks. The Cingular Wireless Chevy has handled well at those tracks lately and I think Richmond will be good to us. We’ve just got to concentrate on making the car rotate well through the corner without being loose on entry.

“Brakes are so important at Richmond and braking in Winston Cup racing is totally different than it is in the CART Series. In CART, you can drive the car into the corner as hard as you want, hit the brakes and then turn the thing. Winston Cup cars like to roll into the corner. I think we’ve got a good program and we’ll hopefully qualify and race well.

On the Indianapolis 500:

“As much as I’m looking forward to racing at night at Richmond, I’m pretty pumped up about leaving Richmond for Indianapolis. The big Indy/Charlotte double begins when the checkered flag waves Saturday night. I’m flying out to Indianapolis after the race. Sunday is opening day for the Indy 500 and it’s my first time in an Indy car since last year’s Indy 500. One cool thing about Indy is that we have so much practice time before qualifying and it won’t take us more than a day or so to get ready for qualifying. I’m confident that we’re going to be strong and contend for the pole. Andretti Green Racing has shown they’re a strong race team, so with their knowledge and my experience, we should be a contender in the Indy 500.

“This will probably be the first time ever that I run a car at Indy on opening day. Even when I was driving for A.J. Foyt, he never ran us on opening day but we ran on Monday (second day). We’re actually going to have to run opening day this year just so we can get comfortable with the car, make sure the seat fits and all those types of things. But I’m confident we’ll have a shot at the pole, as well. We were really strong last year and ran inside the top five during the race but had the pit fire and still finished eighth.

“I’m really excited about running the Double for a number of reasons. Obviously, the Honda engines are very strong. The Andretti Green Hondas come out of California, HPD, so it’s like getting a factory ride, basically, at least from the engine side. The team has won a race this season, Phoenix with Tony Kanaan, so the Green team knows how to run well and now Michael has inherited that team with the same group of guys and the same people running it. I think it’s going to be a lot of fun, especially if you look back and think of the rivalry that Michael and I have had over the years in Indy car racing. It just shows that all that matters is performance on the race track so hats off to Michael for letting me drive the car, as well.

“I know I keep saying this over and over but Richard Childress is an ace. He’s one of the best team owners I’ve ever driven for. He understands that I’m a race car driver and I want to race cars. The Cingular team understands. I’ve met with my Cingular guys and they’re all good with it. They like watching me race so they weren’t going to hold me back. I think I can give both sides a good effort.

“I understand the Dallara (chassis). I know it’s a new Dallara but they give you a pretty good program to work with to get the balance of the car right and I think the Dallara has a broader window of a sweet spot than the G-Force (chassis). The G-Force is a good car but I think the Dallara has a broader sweet spot which may make it a better race car for the race.”

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