Jeff Gordon on HMS: "This is where my true passion lies"

Jeff Gordon’s decision to leave the Fox Sports TV booth was never going to be about ‘if’ but ‘when.’

Jeff Gordon on HMS: "This is where my true passion lies"
Victory lane: Jeff Gordon and Rick Hendrick celebrate
NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Rick Hendrick and former NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon
Rick Hendrick and Jeff Gordon, Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
Jeff Gordon, Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet with Rick Hendrick

The NASCAR Hall of Fame driver has long held an equity stake in Hendrick Motorsports and when Fox’s half of the NASCAR season was complete each year, Gordon would turn his attention to working with HMS.

On Jan. 1, Gordon will formalize his role at Hendrick, becoming its vice chairman, making him the second-ranking team official to chairman and majority owner Rick Hendrick.

The decision to formalize the role following Fox’s 2021 broadcast season was all about timing, Gordon said.

Read Also:

“The culture that Rick has created and how he’s done that and how it impacts things far beyond just what I was doing as a driver, was interesting to me. So, each year, that ramped up more and more as I had pretty much half the season to dedicate my time to it,” Gordon said.

“The more I did that, whether it was coming to the track or being back at the shop on race day or just talking to the marketing department about sponsorship or talking to NASCAR about Next Gen or any business decisions that were going on there with other owners, I realized that this is where my true passion lies.

“I love the sport. I love racing. But the competition and being a partner with one of the best owners there will ever be in NASCAR, that’s really what I was getting excited about looking ahead.”

Gordon, 49, won four Cup Series championships and 93 races in his impressive career all with Hendrick Motorsports. He became an equity owner in HMS in the late 1990s and has played a role in much of the organization’s success, including the hiring of seven-time series champion Jimmie Johnson.

In Gordon there is likely no one more in tune with HMS’ NASCAR success than Hendrick himself.

“From the very beginning (Fox) knew that I had an equity position at Hendrick and that one day this could be home,” Gordon said. “So, this is more about coming home for me.”

It’s certainly a great time for a homecoming.

Although Chase Elliott won the Cup Series title for Hendrick last season, the 2021 season has seen even more dominance by the organization.

Hendrick's current dominance

The four current Hendrick drivers – Kyle Larson (four), Alex Bowman (three), William Byron (one) and Elliott (one) – have combined to win nine of the season’s first 19 races.

Larson’s May 30 victory at Charlotte Motor Speedway gave Hendrick its 269th Cup Series win – breaking the record long held by Petty Enterprises.

Gordon said he sees his primary mission now as ensuring that level of success continues.

“As we move forward, it’s about just continuing to look at the business model and try to understand how we take care of our current partners and nurture those relationships and make sure that they’re excited about NASCAR and Hendrick Motorsports,” he said.

“They certainly are right now, and we want to continue to see that grow. But also, what new partners can we potentially look at and bring in.

“There’s a lot of excitement in our organization right now. So, it makes a great time for me to get into this role.”

shares
comments

Related video

Kyle Larson: "Nothing went my way" at Pocono

Previous article

Kyle Larson: "Nothing went my way" at Pocono

Next article

Chip Ganassi: I’m out of NASCAR but “still heavily involved in motorsports”

Chip Ganassi: I’m out of NASCAR but “still heavily involved in motorsports”
Load comments
Why NASCAR's most resilient driver has landed on his feet at 23XI Prime

Why NASCAR's most resilient driver has landed on his feet at 23XI

In a career that has had many ups and downs, Kurt Busch has been written off many times before. But facing career uncertainty after the sale of Chip Ganassi's NASCAR team, the 2004 Cup champion has found a new berth at Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan's 23XI organization - which underlines his enduring value

NASCAR Cup
Aug 31, 2021
From the archive: Dale Earnhardt’s final Autosport interview Prime

From the archive: Dale Earnhardt’s final Autosport interview

The death of Dale Earnhardt in the 2001 Daytona 500 shocked NASCAR to the core. At the Daytona 24 Hours, two weeks before his fatal accident, ‘The Intimidator’ shared his expectations of challenging for an eighth Cup title with JONATHAN INGRAM, in an article first published in the 15 February 2001 issue of Autosport magazine. Little did we know then what tragedy would unfold…

NASCAR Cup
Feb 18, 2021
The lasting NASCAR legacy after Dale Earnhardt’s death Prime

The lasting NASCAR legacy after Dale Earnhardt’s death

On February 18, 2001, seven-time NASCAR Cup champion Dale Earnhardt – the fearless ‘Intimidator’ – was in his element at Daytona International Speedway. While his own DEI team’s cars ran 1-2 towards the finish line, his famed #3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo was playing rear gunner to block any late runs from the chasing pack. As the cars tore through Turns 3 and 4 on that fateful final lap, Earnhardt maintained the strongarm tactics that encapsulated his persona… but his actions in those moments sadly proved to be his last.

NASCAR Cup
Feb 18, 2021
Inspired by Pitbull, the “revolution” sweeping through NASCAR Prime

Inspired by Pitbull, the “revolution” sweeping through NASCAR

The NASCAR Cup Series is changing. Whether it be the gradual morphing out the seasoned drivers of yesterday as the next generation step up, a radical calendar shake-up featuring more road courses than ever before and the prospect of an all-new car on the horizon, stock car racing’s highest level is nearing the end of a huge facelift.

NASCAR Cup
Feb 16, 2021
The NASCAR storylines to watch out for in 2021 Prime

The NASCAR storylines to watch out for in 2021

This weekend's Daytona 500 kickstarts a NASCAR Cup season that promises plenty of intrigue courtesy of new owners and a refreshed calendar. Here's what you need to know ahead of the new season…

NASCAR Cup
Feb 13, 2021
Why Kyle Larson can't blow his big shot at redemption Prime

Why Kyle Larson can't blow his big shot at redemption

From a disgraced NASCAR exile, Kyle Larson has been given a chance of redemption by the powerhouse Hendrick Motorsports squad. Effectively replacing seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson is no easy billing, but Larson has every intention of repaying the team's faith...

NASCAR Cup
Feb 11, 2021
Why Roger Penske is an American motorsport icon Prime

Why Roger Penske is an American motorsport icon

In this exclusive one-on-one interview, Roger Penske reveals the inner drive that has made him not only a hugely successful team owner and businessman but also the owner of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and IndyCar. He spoke to David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Dec 28, 2020
Why NASCAR's latest second-generation champion is just getting started Prime

Why NASCAR's latest second-generation champion is just getting started

Chase Elliott's late charge to the 2020 NASCAR Cup title defied predictions that it would be a Kevin Harvick versus Denny Hamlin showdown. While the two veterans are showing no signs of slowing down, Elliott's triumph was a window into NASCAR's future…

NASCAR Cup
Nov 18, 2020