Monday, November 8, 2010

Jeff Gordon' pit crew to stay with Jimmie Johnson's team through Chase

   Jeff Gordon's pit crew's temporary move to Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jimmie Johnson's team will remain in place the last two races of the Sprint Cup Series season.
   Team officials confirmed Monday afternoon Gordon's seven-member over-the-wall pit crew will pit Johnson's No. 48 Chevrolet in the final two Chase races at Phoenix and Homestead, Fla.
   The remainder of the teams' personnel will remain intact. Johnson has won the last four Cup titles and trails Hamlin by 33 points with two races left.
   Johnson's crew chief, Chad Knaus, made the change after Gordon wrecked out of Sunday's race at Texas Motor Speedway on Lap 191 of 334.
   Up until that point, Johnson’s pit crew had lost positions on four pit stops in the race.
   With Gordon's crew in place, late in the race, Johnson made up positions on pit road in his final two stops.
   Mike Ford, crew chief for Chase contender Denny Hamlin - who won Sunday's race and took the points leader - called move one of “desperation.”
   "They removed their team,” Ford said after Sunday's win. “Their team got them to this point and they pulled them out. So this is more about trying to win a championship for the company and not the team.”