“I Got Fired” – Hendrick Motorsports VP Jeff Gordon Once Revealed to Dale Earnhardt Jr What Led Him to NASCAR

Published 10/01/2022, 10:15 AM EDT
HOLLYWOOD, FL – NOVEMBER 19: Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet, poses for a photo with the NASCAR Sprint Cup Trophy during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship 4 Media Day at Westin Diplomat on November 19, 2015 in Hollywood, Florida. (Photo by Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)

NASCAR legend and former driver, Jeff Gordon shared his story of how he got into the bigger picture in racing, while having a conversation with Dale Earnhardt Jr and Mike Davis. He also described how he got lucky right after being fired from a job while still in high school.

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During the podcast, Gordon stated, “I guess I was probably 7, 16, 17. I knew I was still in high school at this time, and I got fired. and it just so happened, right after I got fired somebody, my step-dad, who was in the racing business, and he said, ‘listen, Bobby, this guy builds midgets.”

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“He wants you to get in one of his midgets and he’s got this guy he wants you to meet and he might be able to get a ride and it would probably be on pavement.’ And I’m like pavement? Man all I have done was dirt, I don’t know pavement at all. So we anyways went to the race, met this guy, he had just fired his driver.”

“I was looking for a job and he was getting his new beast chassis and the next thing I know, I’m getting asked to drive the car, put in my seat in it. And in May we got to what was the night before the 500, which was a big midget race at IRP and it was live on ESPN.”

“And I went, new track record, new heat record, won the race, just dominated. And that turned into a weekly, that was a weekly. That was actually the RC Cola one and then and the year after that was the white diet Pepsi car and we won everything.”

Dale Earnhardt Sr and Jeff Gordon once shared a massive on-track rivalry

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The Earnhardt and Gordon rivalry is something people talk about to this day. Their on-track battles were perhaps what pushed NACAR to its peak popularity in the 90s.

KANSAS CITY, KS – SEPTEMBER 30: Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 DuPont Chevrolet, looks on in the garage, during practice for the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Banquet 400 on September 30 at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kansas (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)

There even was a documentary based on their rivalry titled, UNRIVALED: EARNHARDT vs. GORDON. The documentary highlights the relationship the two had during that era.

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WATCH THIS STORY: Kevin Harvick Breaks Hendrick Motorsports Legend Jeff Gordon’s Record in Sonoma

Earnhardt had picked up his 7th championship title in a dominating run throughout his career and all of a sudden there was this new kid on the block; Jeff Gordon, who walked into the sport and started dominating the field right away.

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Srijan Mandal

591 articles

Srijan Mandal is a NASCAR author at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his Master’s in Journalism and has been writing for his own blog as well, covering NASCAR, F1, F2, W Series, MotoGP, DTM, IndyCar, WRC, and WEC. Following motorsports for more than a decade, he has become a devout supporter of McLaren Racing, Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon, Bubba Wallace, Sir Lewis Hamilton, and Ayrton Senna.

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