Todd Gordon announced on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio this morning that he will step away at seasons end as crew chief of Ryan Blaney’s No. 12 Ford with Team Penske. In fact, he’s going to retire. Gordon, noted that he wanted more time with his family as the primary reason for his decision.
He won the 2018 NASCAR Cup Series championship as a crew chief with Joey Logano as this is his 10th year as a crew chief in NASCAR’s premiere series but 16th overall with him being in the Xfinity Series for six years prior.
Gordon moved from the 22 to the 12 for the 2020 season with Penske reshuffling the driver-crew chief lineups prior to last season. Everything changed in that sense as it was a move to shake up their organization in order to not let them remain complacent.
It worked. While the journey was difficult with a pandemic and no practice or qualifying for a majority of last season, they still got two cars into the Championship 4.
Now, with Gordon retiring and Brad Keselowski likely leaving for Roush Fenway Racing next season, is Penske going to go through another shakeup?
The most sense would be to move Blaney to the 2 team, even if they want to keep the number still as 12 and allow the new driver to bring in his own crew chief. Wouldn’t that make the most sense? Have Blaney take over Jeremy Bullins and crew that way it’s not such a large shakeup.
The other factor is will this move spark more retirements? See, you can’ teach an old dog new tricks and with a new car coming out for 2022, how many want to change everything they know? With so much work to be done getting these new cars ready for Daytona next February and the chassis not even to the teams yet, there’s double the work load between this year’s car and next.
Some may not have the energy to put into it anymore and may just walk away like Gordon is doing.