Jeff Gordon hits significant milestone at Pocono: has led over 24,000 laps in Cup career

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As if he wasn’t there already by virtue of his four Sprint Cup championships and 90 career wins, Jeff Gordon moved into some very lofty company in Sunday’s GoBowling.com 400 at Pocono Raceway.

On the eve of his 43rd birthday (Monday, Aug. 4), Gordon passed a rather significant milestone of leading 24,000 laps in his 22-season Sprint Cup career.

Gordon is now only the sixth driver in the 65-year history of NASCAR’s premier racing series to hit 24,000 laps led, and the first one to achieve that milestone since the late Dale Earnhardt hit 24,000 in 1996.

Richard Petty leads all drivers with 51,380 laps led, followed by Cale Yarborough (31,556), Bobby Allison (27,551), Earnhardt (25,684) and David Pearson (25,294).

By comparison, Jimmie Johnson, who has won six of the last eight Sprint Cup championships, has led only 16,849 laps in his career.

Leaving Pocono, Gordon has now led 24,012 laps in his career. For those of you doing the math, he now needs 1,283 more laps to pass Pearson for fifth on the all-time laps led list.

What’s more, Gordon is just three laps away from equaling the number of laps he led in 2013 (434 laps), 137 away from his total of 568 in 2012 and 491 laps away from his total of 922 in 2011.

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Report: Spencer Pigot out at Ed Carpenter Racing

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Spencer Pigot will not return to Ed Carpenter Racing in 2020, according to a story Thursday by RACER.com.

The 26-year-old Floridian, who won the 2015 Indy Lights championship, is expected to be replaced in the No. 21 Chevrolet by 2019 Indy Lights runner-up Rinus VeeKay.

“I’m appreciative of the opportunity ECR gave me,” Pigot told RACER.com. “I understand the reasons they had to go in a different direction, and wish them all the best.”

In 56 NTT IndyCar Series starts, Pigot has 15 top 10 finishes, with a best finish of second at Iowa in 2018. He finished 14th in the 2019 point standings.

VeeKay, who tested in an Indy car twice for ECR in 2019, has six wins in 18 Indy Lights starts, including a weekend sweep of the final two rounds of the season at Laguna Seca in September.

A representative from ECR told NBC Sports Thursday that the team currently could not comment on any driver rumors as the team currently does not have any drivers under contract for the 2020 season, although it is presumed that owner/driver Carpenter will return to the No. 20 entry for the oval rounds.

NBC Sports will provide updates on the story once more information becomes available.