In 1990 Gordon met Hugh Connerty, who owned some Hooters restaurants and was also a partner in Outback Steakhouse.
In two seasons, Gordon won twice, in 1999 at the Outback Steakhouse 200, the inaugural race In 1992, Roush Racing owner Jack Roush planned to sign Gordon, but Gordon's stepfather John Bickford had insisted that Roush hire Ray Evernham; due to Roush's policy of hiring his own crew chiefs, Bickford declined.
Gordon's early success in the sport reshaped the paradigm and eventually gave younger drivers an opportunity to compete in NASCAR.
In 1999, Gordon along with Cup crew chief Evernham formed Gordon/Evernham Motorsports (GEM) in the Busch Series with Gordon and Rick Hendrick's son Ricky Hendrick as drivers, the Rainbow Warriors as pit crew and Patrick Donahue as crew chief.
The co-owned team received a full sponsorship from Pepsi and ran six races with Gordon as driver and Evernham as crew chief.
Ray Evernham was called in to work with Gordon in his stock car debut. Gordon ran the second fastest lap during qualifying and started on the outside of the front row of the field.
His first Busch race came on October 20, 1990 at North Carolina Motor Speedway in the AC-Delco 200. Gordon would however, get involved in a wreck on lap 33. In 19, Gordon began racing in the Busch Series full-time, driving Ford Thunderbirds for Bill Davis Racing.
He currently resides in Charlotte, North Carolina with his wife, Ingrid Vandebosch and their two children Ella Sofia and Leo Benjamin.
and began racing quarter midgets at the age of five.
He won his fifth pole of the season at Charlotte, but after the race, NASCAR officials found unapproved wheel hubs on his car, and fined the team ,000 while placing Ray Evernham on probation indefinitely.
compared to 21 in his previous two seasons combined.
Gordon's 81 pole positions led all active drivers and is third all-time; Gordon won at least one pole in 23 consecutive seasons, making this a NASCAR record.