Jeff Gordon says it is ‘highly unlikely’ he’ll run any Sprint Cup races next year

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Although Jeff Gordon left the door open last week to running a NASCAR Sprint Cup race next season, he changed his tune Thursday, calling it “highly unlikely” he would do so.

“That’s just not my game plan,’’ said Gordon, who announced last month that this would be his final full Cup season. “When I start really thinking about it from a realistic standpoint, what I love about racing is not going out there and driving fast. I drive a race because I like competing at a high level to win.

“If I felt like I could go to a Brickyard or Martinsville or Bristol or a couple of tracks that come to mind and be competitive with a competitive team, than I might consider doing that. But I don’t know how that would ever play.

“You can’t do it at Hendrick (Motorsports), really, is how I see it. There’s four teams there that are focused on winning the championship. It would be a disruption to that flow. Then you’ve got to have somebody as a car owner. You’ve got to put together a team and pull together good cars and engines. Then you’ve got to get sponsors.

“I don’t see it happening. If It did become a reality, certainly Indianapolis would be pretty high on my list of tracks.’’

Gordon is a five-time winner at Indianapolis, including last season.