+ DANCING WITH THE CARS He bobbed, weaved and wiggled. He side stepped one car and snuck past another. Indeed, Scott Speed may look back on an overcast Monday in the Metroplex as a defining moment in his 2010 Sprint Cup season. With incredibly...
+ DANCING WITH THE CARS
He bobbed, weaved and wiggled. He side stepped one car and snuck past another. Indeed, Scott Speed may look back on an overcast Monday in the Metroplex as a defining moment in his 2010 Sprint Cup season.
With incredibly skilled work at the wheel, Speed slithered his No. 82 Red Bull Toyota through the Big One at Texas Motor Speedway, going from certain disaster to a 16th-place finish in the rain-delayed Samsung Mobile 500.
"That was totally freakin' awesome," Speed said, in near disbelief, moments after a nine-car wreck 16 laps from the finish. "We got through that."
Not so fortunate was teammate Brian Vickers, who endured a day full of tire failures, spins, smoke and fumes. It ended with a 38th-place finish and trip to the infield care center for a dose of oxygen.
82 . SCOTT SPEED
ESCAPING UNSCATHED: On lap 318, all hell broke loose on the frontstretch (a.k.a., the Big One). Nine cars collided in the dogleg and spun through the grass into turn one. With the track almost completely blocked an oncoming Speed quickly slowed down, and with the help of spotter Tim Fedewa picked a lane, drove through it and narrowly - we mean narrowly - avoided two cars drifting down the banking. All clear to his best Texas finish in three starts.
RADIO CHATTER: Speed was on his game Monday. "I saw that before you, dog." - Speed to Fedewa as he dove low to avoid the spinning car of Sam Hornish Jr. during the fourth caution. VITAL SIGNS: Climbed two spots in the standings to 20th. He's 110 points out of the top 12.
STAT THAT MATTERS: Aside from two tough outings at short tracks in Bristol and Martinsville, consistency is keeping Speed's status in the point standings. He's completed 98.6 percent of the laps this season and has four top-20 finishes in the eight races this season.
83 . BRIAN VICKERS
GET ME OUT OF HERE: Vickers' day turned sour on lap 78 as the right-rear tire blew on the No. 83, sending BV spinning entering the pits. The team pitted four times to fix damage to the right rear, but that was just the beginning. Soon after, another right- rear tire failed and Vickers retreated to the garage for repairs. He returned to the track 24 laps down in 39th. A persistent tire rub then forced fumes into Vickers' face to where he could hardly breathe and he drove the car to the garage again on lap 228. Crew chief Ryan Pemberton soon radioed to the crew "we are done," and Vickers beelined it to the care center for a breath of fresh air. He was treated, released and later said he was "fine" via Twitter.
RADIO CHATTER: "I can't breathe in here. There is so much smoke. I'm coming in. I can't race like this." - Vickers on lap 219.
VITAL SIGNS: Dropped two spots in the standings to 19th. He's 106 points out of the top 12.
STAT THAT MATTERS: There's always Talladega, where Vickers earned his first Sprint Cup victory in October 2006. He finished eighth there last spring and has five top 10s.
+ UP NEXT Aaron's 499, Sunday, April 25, Talladega Superspeedway, Talladega, Ala.