Desperate times call for desperate measure for some as NASCAR heads to Atlanta

Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AdvoCare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on September 6, 2011 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Sunday night’s AdvoCare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway will be an act of desperation for some; 500 miles that could make or break an entire NASCAR Sprint Cup season. Chief among the desperate is Jeff Gordon. Atlanta marks Gordon’s best chance to add another win to his season total and secure a Wild Card spot in this year’s Chase.

Gordon leads all active drivers here with five wins. He’s also the defending winner of this race having taken the victory in an event that was rescheduled to Tuesday last season due to rain. Gordon rolls in here 14th in standings with only one victory this year. He desperately needs to end up in victory lane Sunday night to have a chance to make the Chase this year. Given that the rescheduled event was in daylight last year, Gordon anticipates a different race Sunday.

“I expect the track to be a lot faster at night,” Gordon said.  “But I think we will still be able to race high, low and everywhere in between. I think one of the reasons so many drivers and teams love this place is the track has a lot of grip, a lot of banking and it is a very fast race track – especially when looking at the qualifying speeds. It’s very fast during the race but it has a lot of fall off, so tire wear is significant and the balance of the car changes throughout a run.” MORE>>>

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