Robby Gordon has announced that he will return to NASCAR competition with his own team, Robby Gordon Motorsports, for the 2012 running of the Daytona 500. Gordon, 43, will be making his 24th attempt to win the 'Great American Race,' but will have to race his way into the 500 having dropped out of the top 35 in owners points.
“Daytona is the 17th race of the 2012 season for us,” Gordon said. “Racing is still my passion and in order to brand our product, SPEED Energy, we need to race. We are fortunate to have Mapei and Menards on board for the 500 and I look forward to the challenge of putting our car into the show.”
Always one to watch, Gordon has a point to prove, having been reduced to starting and parking for much of the 2011 season. In the lottery that is restrictor-plate racing, he should certainly stand a chance – Trevor Bayne's improbable win last year proves that just about anyone can win the 500 – but first you have to be in the field, a fact Gordon is well aware of.
“We'll see how the new NASCAR rules break up the two car draft, but if not, we certainly have a fast car that can be pushed to the front,” he said.
The experienced Californian, who finished 6th in 2003 and 2008 respectively, was on course for a good finish last year before late contact with Tony Stewart dropped him down to 16th.