This week Robby Gordon has landed himself back in the NASCAR spotlight with an on-track altercation with Joey Logano.Â It seems that Robby has gotten a reputation as being a â€œfield fillerâ€ or an â€œalso ranâ€.Â What fans need to know is that Robby is so much more than the â€œother Gordon (no relation)â€.Â This man has the type of grit and determination reminiscent of the founders of this sport.Â Robby Gordon makes his own way in NASCAR, choosing to stay true to himself over making friends or playing the game.
Robby Gordon started his career at the age of eight racing motorbikes.Â Â Â When he turned 16, he got behind the wheel of a race car and spent his time racing off-road events.Â Â With 6 off-road championships to his credit, he wanted to branch out into sports cars.Â It was there that he caught the attention of A.J. Foyt, and by 1993, he was racing the CART series.Â Gordon had two wins and two 5th place championship seasons with CART before making the move to NASCAR Sprint Cup full time in 2002. In 1999, Robby almost won the Indianapolis 500, when his chance of winning a fuel-mileage race sputtered to an end just one lap before the checkers.
Robby Gordon drove for Richard Childress from 2002 until Robby started his own team in 2005.Â Robby has 3 wins in NASCARâ€™s highest division, with 39 top tens, and one pole.Â Robby is a master of road courses, sharing the honor of winning both road course events in the same season with Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, and Kyle Busch.Â He also has the honor of being one of three drivers to try the â€œDoubleâ€, racing both the Indianapolis 500 and the Coca-Cola 600 in the same day.Â Â Robby has had a hard road since he became an owner/driver.Â With limited sponsorship and the pressures of both jobs, his best season finish since that move to owner/driver is 26th.
Robby Gordon hasnâ€™t abandoned off-road racing.Â He fields his own team to race in the Dakar Rally.Â The Rally is an insane off-road race that changes routes yearly, but always races through the desert in South America.Â In 2011, this race had 13 stages going through Argentina and Chile, with over 3100 miles of racing, and spanning 16 days.Â In Robbyâ€™s career at the Dakar Rally, he has won stages 3 times and finished a personal best of 3rd in 2009.
Robby Gordon is known for being a hot-headed, passionate driver no matter which circuit he races.Â Controversy seems to follow him wherever he goes.Â Â In IndyCar, he famously made enemies with Danica Patrick (and women drivers everywhere) when he said:
“The lighter the car, the faster it goes,” Gordon said. “Do the math. Put her in the car at her weight, then put me or Tony Stewart in the car at 200 pounds and our car is at least 100 pounds heavier.
“I won’t race against her until the IRL does something to take that advantage away.” (ESPN.com)
Robby has been placed on probation in the NASCAR series more than a few times with either parts infractions or driver altercations.Â In 2005, Robby was involved in an altercation with Michael Waltrip, where he threw his helmet at Waltripâ€™s car under caution.Â That helmet was later auctioned off for 50k for then sponsorâ€™s Harrahs Employee Relief Fund that helped Harrahâ€™s employees displaced by Hurricane Katrina.Â Robby is currently on â€œindefinite probationâ€ with NASCAR due to an altercation with fellow driver Kevin Conway.Â Conway has also filed criminal charges against Gordon with Las Vegas police.
On a more personal note, I love Robby Gordon.Â I have met him, while I was working for a former sponsor of his, and I was blown away by how gracious and funny he is. Â (Not to mention attractive. Â You need to see this man outside a firesuit!) Â Robby is a driver that is there for his fans, as you will find him at his souvenir trailer signing autographs every weekend.Â Robby Gordon is not your â€œvanillaâ€ race car driver, as he wears his heart and his emotions on his sleeve.Â In a sport of almost always perfect drivers, it is refreshing to know that someone out there will still tell it like it is.
Keep on doing what you do, Robby.Â Your fans appreciate every last bit of it.