Youth Brigade

Jeff Gordon should consider retiring in Phoenix, because there’s obviously something here that slows the man’s aging process. It’s been 11 years since Gordon won a Sprint Cup, but his recent performances at Phoenix International Raceway have been straight out of his 2001 glory days.

There are plenty of reasons to expect that Gordon’s luck will run out at Sunday’s Subway Fresh Fit 500. His season has been lackluster, and there’s no shortage of competition at this year’s race. The same things were said last year, too -- Gordon was in the midst of a 66-race losing streak coming into 2011's race -- and yet he grabbed that checkered flag and became the event’s first two-time winner. Gordon isn’t the best driver in NASCAR anymore, but we’re betting he’ll be the best driver in Avondale on Sunday.

Fri., March 2; Sat., March 3; Sun., March 4, 1 p.m., 2012
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Ed Kummerer