He’s so money: How lucrative has NASCAR become over Jeff Gordon’s career?

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Jeff Gordon’s meteoric run to the top of NASCAR not only helped propel the sport onto the national stage.

It also helped him and his fellow drivers make a lot of cash.

Over on CNBC.com, Eric Chemi has put up a fascinating piece of data journalism that looks at Gordon and NASCAR’s respective rises through on-track earnings.

Here’s a telling excerpt from Chemi’s story on how NASCAR’s prize money has grown in Gordon’s career:

When Gordon competed in his first race in Atlanta in November 1992, the winner that day took home a relatively measly $93,600. The entire total payout for that race, for ALL drivers combined, was just $641,000.

That pales in comparison to the numbers seen in NASCAR’s most recent race, the 2014 season-finale two months ago at Homestead. In that race, the winning car by itself took home nearly $350,000, while the entire field was paid almost $5 million. That’s an average growth rate of ten percent per year—better than the stock market’s performance during that time.

Times have changed for America’s most popular motorsport. And for those that compete in it, wallets have certainly gotten fatter.

Chemi’s story also breaks down how Gordon has raked in almost $150 million in on-track earnings over his career (and that’s not counting his off-track endorsement deals). Additionally, it reveals which driver may be on his way to hitting the $200 million mark one day.

Check it out over at CNBC.com.

IndyCar entry lists for Harvest GP at Indianapolis Motor Speedway

IndyCar entry lists Indianapolis
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There are 25 drivers on the NTT IndyCar Series entry lists at Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course with a few new yet familiar faces for the Oct. 2-3 race weekend.

Four-time champion Sebastien Bourdais will make his season debut in the No. 14 Dallara-Chevrolet (shifting Dalton Kellett to the No. 41) with AJ Foyt Racing, which he is joining full time next season. James Hinchcliffe, who had run three races with Andretti Autosport, will return in place of Zach Veach in the No. 26 Dallara-Honda. Helio Castroneves will drive Arrow McLaren SP’s No. 7 Dallara-Chevy for Oliver Askew, who is out with concussion-like symptoms.

Sage Karam, who has two IndyCar starts this year at IMS (the road course on July 4 and the Indy 500 on Aug. 23), also will return to the series in Dreyer & Reinbold’s No. 24 Dallara-Chevrolet.

HARVEST GP ENTRY LISTS: Friday l Saturday

Friday and Saturday of the Harvest GP presented by GMR will mark the second and third races this season on Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. While the July 4 race on the circuit was 80 laps, Friday’s distance is 85 laps, and Saturday will be a 75-lap event.

Championship leader Scott Dixon led 26 of 80 laps to win the July 4 race at the IMS road course. With three races remaining in the series, the five-time series champion enters with a 72-point lead on Josef Newgarden.

Click here to see who’s on the IndyCar entry lists in Race 1 and in Race 2 for the Harvest GP presented by GMR at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.


START TIMES AND TV INFO FOR INDYCAR AT INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY ROAD COURSE (all times ET):

Thursday

IndyCar NTT Series practice: 2:25-3:40 p.m., NBC Sports Gold

IndyCar qualifying, Race 1: 6:20 p.m. (two groups/12 minutes apiece), NBC Sports Gold

Friday

—IndyCar Harvest Grand Prix, Race 1: 3:30 p.m. (green flag, 5 p.m.), USA Network, NBC Sports Gold

Saturday

—IndyCar qualifying: 10:20 a.m. (two groups/12 minutes apiece), NBC Sports Gold

—IndyCar Harvest Grand Prix, Race 2: 2:30 p.m (green flag, 2:31 p.m.)., NBC, NBC Sports Gold