NASCAR Sprint Cup points leader Jeff Gordon has been listed as questionable to start this weekend’s Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, per a report from USA Today.
Gordon has been suffering with back spasms, and missed the majority of Saturday’s practice, running only 11 laps before leaving his car to get treatment. Gordon’s No. 24 team did not participate in the afternoon practice session.
Gordon’s car is set to start in the 27th position on Sunday, and his team has driver Regan Smith, the current Nationwide Series points leader, on standby.
“Unfortunately, I had a back spasm the other night in that last qualifying run that I made,” Gordon said in an interview. “And I’ve been trying to get it worked out by today, and I got in the car and it just wasn’t.
“I just had to tell the team that I think it would be best if I sit out the rest of the day so that I can be prepared for this long, tough race that’s going to happen tomorrow.”
Gordon says he expects to start on Sunday, but should his back keep him out of the car he will not risk any eligibility for the Chase for the Sprint Cup since he was the driver who ran the qualifying run.
The Vallejo, Ca. native has not missed a race since making his Cup debut in 1993, and holds a streak of 736 consecutive starts, which is the longest among active drivers.