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SPORT NEWS – Retiring Gordon leaving Penske’s No.12 Cup automobile in good arms

Retiring Gordon leaving Penske’s No.12 Cup automobile in good arms



As Todd Gordon bids farewell to Crew Penske and NASCAR, he does so understanding the No. 12 workforce is in good arms and has loads left to perform.

“This group, they’re nice. They’re phenomenal,” Gordon advised RACER by The Racing Author’s Podcast. “I’m actually happy with getting this group collectively and simply watching them be as profitable as they are often, and be the folks they’re. They’re all nice, they usually mesh rather well.”

Whereas Gordon solely labored with Ryan Blaney for 2 seasons, the workforce has been collectively for fairly some time. They have been previously the No. 22 beneath Gordon’s steerage, which received the 2018 championship with Joey Logano. However they grew to become the No. 12 workforce for Blaney going into the 2020 season when Roger Penske swapped the crews for every driver.

With Gordon retiring after 11 years at Penske and 23 years within the sport, Jonathan Hassler takes the reins.

“Jonathan Hassler goes to leap right into a scenario right here the place he has a gaggle that has a number of chemistry and comradery, they usually don’t should study one another,” continued Gordon. “He’s acquired to study them, they usually’ve acquired to study him, however Ryan and all the fellows, they need to simply be capable to proceed ahead. I feel Jonathan has achieved an excellent job right here. He’s been right here longer than I’ve at Crew Penske, so he’s been within the combine and is aware of all of the folks, is aware of all of the personalities, and I be ok with the place this 12 workforce is.”

Gordon and Blaney clicked from the start. Openness between the 2 was key, as Blaney laid out for Gordon on day one what his weaknesses have been, and what he wanted assist enhancing.

“Controlling emotion was primary on his record, and that he might get excited in a race and that might get him sidetracked,” Gordon mentioned. “You noticed the evolution of that by the final 72 races. He had good tempo, however we’d get in conditions, and also you’d begin to see us come unraveled, after which he’d collect it again up. I feel a part of that’s simply creating the surroundings. Josh Williams does a fantastic job as he spotter with him, and Josh and I (talked) backwards and forwards about tips on how to form of assist him by that at occasions, and it’s gotten to the purpose the place he doesn’t must.”

Having a relaxed voice on the radio was essential. Blaney might pop off, however a lap later was again centered. One other a part of the expansion was Blaney understanding the significance of to not getting caught up within the present lap, however seeing the larger and longer image.

“Atlanta, he mentioned it there on the finish,” Gordon mentioned of the race on March 21. “(Blaney) mentioned, ‘I can’t run with him [Kyle Larson] proper now, I’m going to care for my stuff,’ and he let the 5 automobile go and didn’t dissipate the tires attempting to chase him down. And knew that 25 laps into the run, he was going to have the tempo to go run him again down and trusted in that and had sufficient psychological bandwidth to course of that and say, OK, I’m not going to try this as a result of I do know 25 laps from now I can go forward and run him down, and that’s primarily what he ended up doing.”

In two seasons collectively, the Gordon and Blaney pairing received 4 races and made the playoffs twice. This previous 12 months, Blaney went to the Spherical of 8 within the championship and had the possibility to advance into the Championship 4 going into the elimination race at Martinsville Speedway. An Eleventh-place end in the end wasn’t sufficient to make it occur.

However with Gordon, Blaney had a profession 12 months in 2021. He received a number of races for the primary time in a single season, and tied his career-best end at seventh in factors. Gordon and Blaney wanted their run collectively – and Gordon’s time in NASCAR – with a fourth-place end within the finale at Phoenix Raceway.

“I advised everyone within the workforce assembly on the hauler on Sunday that I do know we’re not racing for a championship, however I do know you’ll, and I do know you’ll win one,” Gordon mentioned. “I feel Ryan’s acquired that in him; I feel he’s not at his 100% potential but. And that’s the actually thrilling a part of it’s that I acquired to observe him develop by a few of it. You see that coming in him.

“I really feel very assured that Ryan will win a championship, and it’ll come within the subsequent 4 or 5 years.”

The complete interview with Gordon may be heard beneath:

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SPORT NEWS – Retiring Gordon leaving Penske’s No.12 Cup automobile in good arms
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