Texas: Red Bull Racing preview

Who: Scott Speed (82 Red Bull Toyota), Brian Vickers (83 Red Bull Toyota) What: Samsung 500 (Sprint Cup) When: Friday-Sunday, April 3-5, 2009 Where: Texas Motor Speedway, Fort Worth, Texas LIKE NIGHT AND DAY One track is 1.5 miles, the ...

Who: Scott Speed (82 Red Bull Toyota), Brian Vickers (83 Red Bull Toyota) What: Samsung 500 (Sprint Cup)

When: Friday-Sunday, April 3-5, 2009 Where: Texas Motor Speedway, Fort Worth, Texas

LIKE NIGHT AND DAY

One track is 1.5 miles, the other 1.54.

Each has 24-degree banking and a couple of kinks in the frontstretch. But Brian Vickers said the sister speedways in Texas and Atlanta aren't related at all. "There's not a race track we go to that I think is the same," Vickers said. "What you run at Texas is not what you run at Atlanta. Not even close, actually." The two tracks can be compared in size and appearance, but it's the racing surface that sets them apart. Atlanta's surface, last repaved 12 years ago dur the track's reconfiguration project is treacherous and rough. Texas wa last smoothed over in 2001 and is much less demanding on the car's setup.

Vickers knows his season-best fifth- place finish March 8 at Atlanta means little heading into Sunday's Samsung 500. "What you have to accomplish at Atlanta, just trying to get the rear tires hooked up, is completely different than what you have to accomplish at Texas," he said. "Texas is fast, still pretty smooth. It's getting old, but it's not old yet. Atlanta's just rough as hell."

But history says Vickers has a good chance to bounce back from a disheartening 33rd-place finish at Martinsville that dropped him to 20th in points. At Texas, Vickers owns a pole (November 2006) and five finishes inside the top 20. Teammate Scott Speed started and finished 33rd in his first visit to Texas last fall. He also finished 26th and 10th in his two Camping World Truck starts there.

HE SALUTES YOU

A strong supporter of the U.S. Armed Services, Brian Vickers will get the chance to meet the fighting men and women he admires when approximately 85 soldiers from Fort Hood, Texas, visit the Red Bull Energy Station on Saturday. "I am honored and excited to have the opportunity to meet the men and women that serve this country," Vickers said, "defending the rights and protecting the freedoms that allow us to come out and race every Sunday."

Fort Hood, about a three-hour drive south of Texas Motor Speedway in Killeen, has more than 52,000 soldiers currently assigned and is one most diverse milit posts anywhere in the world. It's the country's only two-division post, as the 1st Cavalry Division and 4th Infantry Division are based at Fort Hood, as well as the 13th Sustainment Command. One out of every 10 Army soldiers on active duty is assigned there. www.redbullracingusa.com

ATHLETES EVERYWHERE

Much like Sunday afternoons in the NFL, race days in the Sprint Cup Series are loud, fast and oftentimes hard-hitting. So Reggie Bush should feel right at home when the Red Bull athlete and NFL star is a guest of Red Bull Racing Team on Sunday. The 23-year-old Bush, a running back with the New Orleans Saints and 2005 Heisman Trophy winner, will take in all the sights of the Samsung 500 from the No. 83 pit box. Red Bull cracked the "big four" of North American professional sports when it began supporting Bush in January. He's the first NFL star to join a Red Bull roster of champions in motorsports, the Olympics, world competition and the X Games. Other Red Bull athletes on hand will include freeskier Angeli VanLaanen and snowcross rider Heath Frisby.

-credit: rbr

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Scott Speed , Brian Vickers
Teams Red Bull Racing