Hendrick Motorsports teammates Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson are pretty much locked into the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.

Johnson needs only to secure a top 30 spot and attempt to qualify for the remaining races, and he’ll go 11-for-11 in Chase appearances. Jeff Gordon has locked up a top 30 spot. His win at Kansas all but assured him a spot in the Chase; another win would guarantee it (assuming, of course, he attempts to qualify for all the races).

So now what?

Now, bonus points. And bragging rights.

Gordon long held the title of King of the Brickyard as far as NASCAR racing was concerned. His four wins long stood as the pinnacle. Then, in 2012, Johnson tied that mark. He came close to surpassing it last year with a runner-up finish to winner Ryan Newman.

Some notes to think about when comparing these two champions…

* It’s the 20th anniversary of the inaugural Brickyard 400, won by Gordon, who’s still the youngest winner ever there at 23 years, 2 days.

* As mentioned on Page 1, the winner of the Brickyard race went on to win that year’s championship eight times. Three of those were done by Jimmie Johnson (2006, 2008, 2009).

* Both are looking to snap out of mini-slumps. Gordon has finished outside the top 10 in each of the last two races (12th at Daytona; 26th at New Hampshire). Johnson has finished 42nd in each of the last two races, thanks to consecutive DNFs that have allowed him to run only 31 of a possible 417 laps.   back...
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