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Race/Date: Checker Auto Parts 500
Location: Phoenix International Raceway
Start Position: Ninth
Finish Position: 27th
Points Position: 20th

Race Recap:
Robby Gordon and the No. 31 Cingular Wireless team usually run well at flat race tracks, but Phoenix International Raceway presented some unique challenges to the team Sunday.

The Cingular Wireless Chevrolet was a little loose in the opening laps but Gordon radioed that the car was still good. Team Cingular pitted under caution on lap 29 for two tires, fuel and air pressure adjustments to tighten up the handling. Quick work in the pits coupled with the two-tire decision catapulted Gordon from the 12th spot to the second. But the Richard Childress Racing machine did not fare well on two fresh tires and the handling was immediately too loose. The team decided to take four tires in each future pit stop, but Gordon was forced to stick it out for over 100 laps. He tried running the high and the low grooves to determine the best line for his car, but fell to the 26th position by lap 93 in the 312-lap event.

Gordon brought the Cingular car in for service under caution on lap 135 and received four tires, fuel and chassis adjustments. The adjustments improved the car’s performance a bit and Gordon moved up to the 23rd spot by lap 185. Gordon posted lap times comparable to the leaders early in a run, but with the sun setting, track conditions changing and wear on the tires, his lap times fell off as the handling went away on the Cingular Wireless machine.

Gordon continued to work on finding the best line on the track and hitting his marks. He crossed the finish line in the 27th position and held on to 20th-place in the points standings.

Robby Gordon Quotes:
"We didn’t have the day we were looking for at Phoenix. We had a great qualifying run with the Cingular car but struggled in race trim most of the weekend. We don’t really understand it because we’re usually really good on the flat tracks. Phoenix was definitely a huge disappointment for us, but we are looking ahead to Homestead already. We’ve had some great runs this season and we hope to finish the year on a high note next weekend."