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Jeff Gordon leads field of candidates for 2019 NASCAR Hall of Fame class

Sprint Cup Series driver Jeff Gordon (24) climbs into his car during practice for the NASCAR Brickyard 400 auto race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Friday, July 24, 2015. (AP Photo/R Brent Smith)

Jeff Gordon has been nominated for the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Now he just needs to be elected.

Gordon is on the list of 20 candidates for the 2019 class for the NASCAR Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility. It’s not a matter of if he’ll be one of the five voted into the Hall when voting happens in May, but rather if he’ll be the first person to appear on every single Hall of Fame ballot.

He should.

Gordon is one of the five most successful drivers in NASCAR, along with Dale Earnhardt, Richard Petty, Jimmie Johnson and David Pearson. Only Earnhardt, Johnson and Petty have more titles than Gordon’s four and only Petty and Pearson have more wins in the Cup Series than Gordon’s 93.

Gordon currently serves as NASCAR analyst for Fox Sports in addition to his duties with Hendrick Motorsports, the team he drove for throughout the Cup Series. Gordon retired from the Cup Series full-time in 2015 but returned to fill in for Dale Earnhardt Jr. in 2016 when Junior was sidelined with a concussion. NASCAR said when Gordon came back in his substitute rule that his three-year waiting period for NASCAR HOF eligibility wouldn’t be affected.

Here are the 19 other members eligible for the Hall of Fame along with Gordon. Outside of Gordon’s automatic inclusion, it’s going to be a fascinating discussion to figure out the four other inductees. Voters could go with owners like Joe Gibbs, Roger Penske and Jack Roush now that Rick Hendrick and Richard Childress are in the HOF. Davey Allison could get the nod. Buddy Baker won 19 races and was a longtime television analyst. Alan Kulwicki is the last true driver-owner to win a Cup Series title.

Who would be on your ballot?

Davey Allison
Buddy Baker
Red Farmer
Ray Fox
Harry Gant
Jeff Gordon
Joe Gibbs
John Holman
Harry Hyde
Alan Kulwicki
Bobby Labonte
Ralph Moody
Hershel McGriff
Roger Penske
Larry Phillips
Jack Roush
Ricky Rudd
Kirk Shelmerdine
Mike Stefanik
Waddell Wilson

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.