Races & Results
Open Wheel
Online Store

Event Preview Fact Sheet

Event/Date: Auto Club 500/April 27, 2003

Venue: California Speedway

Robby Gordon’s NASCAR Winston Cup Performance History at California Speedway




Laps Completed/

Total Laps















TOTALS Avg. Start: 34.5 Avg. Finish: 21.5 Laps: 497/500 Money: $127,206

NASCAR Winston Cup Points Position: 14th


  • This Week’s Race Car (chassis No. 116) is a brand-new race car
  • Gordon grew up in nearby Orange, Calif., and still maintains a residence there. His first race shop is located on the same property as his house in Orange.
  • Gordon finished in the runner-up position in an IROC race at Fontana in June 1997 after starting from the 10th spot
  • Gordon finished in the 11th (10/99) and ninth (11/98) positions in CART events at Fontana
  • Gordon will greet fans and sign autographs from 4-7 p.m. at the grand opening of Robby Gordon Off Road on April 26.. The grand opening, which is open to the public, is set for 10 a.m-7 p.m., and Gordon is scheduled to arrive that afternoon following Happy Hour at California Speedway. Located in Anaheim, Calif., about 35 miles from California Speedway, Robby Gordon Off Road will showcase Gordon’s racing memorabilia, NASCAR collectibles, show cars and show trucks, as well as signature suspension lifts, wheels and tires.
  • The Auto Club 500 will be broadcast live on FOX and MRN on Sunday, April 27 at 3:00 p.m. EST. Qualifying is scheduled for Friday, April 25 at 6:05 p.m. EST.


“I’m really looking forward to Fontana because it’s in my backyard. My family still lives in Orange, Calif., which is only about 45 minutes from the track. I’ve still got a house out there next door to my father’s house and his race shop. My father’s race shop was actually my first race shop where he and I built a lot of my cars. He still races his off-road cars out of there. So, Fontana is a pretty good trip for me. I’ll go out there a little early and stay for a few days after the race is over with. I don’t get to see my parents and sisters very often so I take every chance I can get.

“I think the Cingular team will do well at Fontana. We were pretty good there last year after we made a few adjustments. We came all the way from the back of the field due to an engine change to finish in the 12th position. But we’ve struggled at the downforce tracks so far this year but my teammates Kevin Harvick and Jeff Green did a lot better at Texas, the last downforce track we raced at. They had a different type of car than I did that weekend — something the body shop had just finished up. We alternate which teams get the new cars at Richard Childress Racing and it just so happened that Texas wasn’t my weekend. So, we saw the difference between the newest, most updated cars that Jeff and Kevin had and the car I had. We had finally hit on something and the body shop went to work making one for the Cingular team for Fontana. We should be pretty competitive this weekend.

“Fontana is the first two-mile track we’ve been to this season besides Daytona and Talladega. It’s a really large, flat track that’s similar to Las Vegas. The Cingular Wireless team plans to approach Fontana the same way we approached Las Vegas. The banking at the two tracks is similar but Fontana is just a larger track. Passing hasn’t ever been easy at Fontana but it’s tended to be a one-groove race track over the years, but has gotten a bit better as rubber has been laid down on the track.

“I’ve only run two Winston Cup races at Fontana, although I’ve raced a few CART and IROC races there. A lot of people think that since I’ve raced Indy cars there, I can take what I learned and apply it to the Cingular team. Not true. There is really not much between Indy and Winston Cup cars that I can compare and apply at Fontana. There is a huge weight difference in the two styles of cars and in an Indy car, you can pretty much run wide open around the whole track and I don’t think you can do that in a Cup car. I haven’t been able to do that at Fontana in a Winston Cup car — I don’t know if anyone else can.”