Jeff Gordon heading for 'incredible finish" to NASCAR career

Jeff Gordon says he is now entertaining the notion of winning the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup title and writing a fairytale end to his career

Jeff Gordon heading for 'incredible finish" to NASCAR career

The four-time champion announced in January he would retire at the end of the 2015 season, and he qualified for the Chase without winning a race.

That changed at Martinsville last Sunday, with Gordon winning an action-packed race to become the first driver to qualify for the final phase that will decide the championship.

If he beats his three Chase rivals at Homestead on November 22, Gordon will bow out with his fifth title.

"This is turning into one of these just incredible storybook finishes to this year, to this career," he said.

"Of all years, I cannot believe this. I'm so excited it's happening in this year.

"Yeah, we had a few things that fell in our favour [at Martinsville].

"But you've got to be there and be ready for that moment when it comes, and we were.

"It feels amazing to be able to go to Homestead and go battle for that championship."

The 44-year-old won his last NASCAR title in 2001, but he has only finished outside of the top 10 in the standings once since then, with 11th in '05.

"Everything's changed since I won a championship," he added.

"It only makes it that much more meaningful to me, that it's been this long, that it's been in this format.

"Trust me, we are not going to take that lightly, the opportunity that lies in front of us.

"This is not, 'OK, cool, we won Martinsville, we get to be one of the four at Homestead. We're going to watch them battle for the championship'.

"No way. This team is way better than that.

"We're just as capable as anybody else that's going to be in that final four."

WIN HELPS PRESERVE LEGACY

Gordon admitted he had noticed the scrutiny of his lean final season, having finished the regular campaign 12th in the points.

"For us to be a team that nobody, nobody, had picked to be able to make it to Homestead, I love that we just keep proving them wrong and finding a way to move on," he said.

"Hopefully when we're at Homestead, people will give us a little more respect of what kind of depth our race team has.

"Nothing is more frustrating than when people call in [to radio shows] and say, 'if Jeff Gordon doesn't win this year, it's going to tarnish his career'.

"I hear it. I agree. I felt like if we didn't win this year, it was going to take away from it a little bit.

"I'm hoping we've got one more in us."

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