Gordon's back still hurting him

Mark Martin and Jeff Gordon (AP)

TALLADEGA, Ala. (AP) - Jeff Gordon says the back pain he had
last week at Phoenix International Raceway has yet to go away and
he expects to drive with some discomfort this season.

Gordon complained about his back after last week's race. He says
the pain has not subsided and he often has back spasms. He doesn't
expect the discomfort to go away anytime soon.

Gordon says the tracks in Richmond, Va.; Martinsville, Va.;
Bristol, Tenn.; and the road courses could affect him later this

The Sprint Cup standings leader says his health is not an excuse
for a poor performance.