Even for those who don’t know the slightest about racing, the name “Jeff Gordon” is synonymous with it. He’s the Rainbow Warrior, the Wonder Boy and most importantly, he’s the No. 24. But his legacy becomes just that—a legacy—upon his retirement this afternoon. Yes, it’s that close.
He’s logged 38 years on behind the wheel of race cars both large and small. Gordon set his path into the sport at age 4, receiving a quarter-midget race car at his California home and moving through the rankings from there. Gordon’s family lent his first car to some dude back in 1978, and the guy never gave it back. Can you say, “Cha-ching”? That’s a collector’s item right there.
In his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career spanning 24 seasons (did he do that on purpose?), Gordon has 93 victories, 24,920 laps led and four championships in 796 starts. As one of the final four title contenders entering today’s season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Gordon has one last chance to change those stats.
After this weekend, that all comes to an end. The No. 24 cockpit will house a new driver for the 2016 season as 2014 Xfinity Series champion Chase Elliott begins his reign in the Cup Series, and Gordon will move into the television booth.
As a tribute, we want to ask all of you: what’s your favorite Gordon memory?
Tell us your best stories, whether they be on track, off track—whatever you’d like. But try not to be too depressing, because the whole racing world is has “something in [its] eye” this weekend anyway.
Photo credit: AP Photo/Terry Renna
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