Robby Gordon began his top-level career in 1991 in NASCAR and next year debuted in CART. Until 1999 he preferentially raced in IndyCars (CART and IRL series) with sporadic drives in NASCAR, except 1997 season which he spent in NASCAR. Starting since the 2000 season, Gordon changed the vector of his interest, switching to full-season NASCAR driving, and restricting his open-wheel presence only at the Indianapolis 500. He, along with John Andretti, Tony Stewart, and Kurt Busch are the only four drivers to race in the Coca-Cola 600 and Indy 500 in the same day, performing so called “Double Duty”. Double Duty, also referred to as the Indy-Charlotte Double or Memorial Day Double, is an auto racing term centered around two events held on Memorial Day weekend in most years. The two events are the annual Indianapolis 500, which is the most important Indycar Series race held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indiana, and the annual Coca-Cola 600, which is a NASCAR Cup Series race held at the Charlotte Motor Speedway in North Carolina. First driver who successfully preformed Double Duty was John Andretti in 1994. In 1999 and 2001 Tony Stewart doubled his Double Duty.
Gordon tried his first attempt in 1997. Driving for the SABCO Racing team, he was entered in both races. On race day, however, the Indy 500 was rained out, and the opportunity for the true “Double Duty” was eliminated. Gordon departed the grounds, and went directly to Charlotte when the postponement was announced. Gordon finished 41st at Charlotte after a crash. On Monday, Gordon flew back to Indy, and started the race. The race was halted on lap 15 due to rain, and the conclusion was pushed into Tuesday. On Tuesday, Gordon dropped out early with a fire, and finished 29th. In 2000 Robby attempted for the second time. On race day, rain delayed the start of the Indy 500 by three hours. Gordon remained at Indianapolis, and started the race as planned. He finished 6th, and back-up driver P. J. Jones started his car at Charlotte instead. After the Indy 500 was over, Gordon flew to Charlotte, and during a pit stop, took over the car from Jones. He drove the car to a 35th-place finish. In 2002 and 2003 he made two other successful double drives at Indy and Charlotte. In 2004 Gordon attempted Double Duty for the third year in a row and fifth time overall. He qualified his #70 Dallara-Chevrolet 18th at Indianapolis. On race day, rain delayed the start of the Indy 500 by two hours. Gordon started the race as planned. After a red flag for rain at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, it appeared that the rest of the day would likely be a washout, so Gordon departed for Charlotte. After another two hours, the track dried, and the race resumed. Jaques Lazier became his replacement driver. Lazier retired after 88 laps due to broken axle, but all points were awarded to Robby Gordon. Meanwhile, at Charlotte, Robby Gordon finished 20th, three laps down. After Gordon’s adventures, only Kurt Busch was able to complete Double Duty mission in 2014.
|2004||IndyCar Series||Indianapolis 500|
|Robby Gordon / Jaques Lazier||70||Robby Gordon Motorsports|
|Dallara IR-04||Chevrolet||Meijer / Coca Cola|
|GL-104 No. 71642|