Vickers returns to Bristol Motor Speedway where he made his debut with MWR

Brian Vickers returns to the track to mark his one year anniversary driving for Michael Waltrip Racing in the Sprint Cup series.

CORNELIUS, N.C. — Brian Vickers returns to Bristol Motor Speedway where he made his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut for Michael Waltrip Racing in 2012.

Brian Vickers, Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota
Brian Vickers, Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota

Photo by: Eric Gilbert

And what a debut it was.

Vickers led 125 laps and finished fifth. His success continued throughout the season where he scored three top-five and five top-10 finishes in eight races for the Rodney Childers led team.

The 29-year-old’s nine-race schedule in 2013 includes: all Bristol, Martinsville, and Loudon races plus the Sonoma, Watkins Glen and Kentucky races.

Will you be at a disadvantage with the new car running a limited NSCS schedule? “I don’t think so. I don’t think in the long run -- I’ve been racing at all these tracks for a decade and they don’t change that much in a year. I’m going to be on all the tracks in the Nationwide Series this year. I’m going to be in the 2013 Toyota Camry car some -- probably going to test it more as well. I don’t think that the differences between the old car to the new car are so great that only running it nine times versus 30 times is going to matter.”

What has it been like working with Rodney Childers? “It’s been great and he (Rodney Childers, crew chief) is an integral component to the team’s performance and the organization’s performance and my performance. Clearly all the guys -- not just him, but all that flows down from the top and he’s done a phenomenal job. I’ve known Rodney for 20-plus years and he was the guy that got me into go-karts so working with him again has been a pleasure on two fronts. One, he builds really good cars and two, we have a great relationship.”

Were you pleased with your results last year? “Pleased, but not satisfied. I would have loved to have won one of those races and we came very close. Obviously, very pleased with the results and how it all worked out considering it was part time. Personally, it was a phenomenal year. I got to race all over the world. I got to run some races that some of my peers would dream about running. They may never get that chance because they’ll spend their whole career here. I came back so it’s clearly a good place to be -- I love NASCAR, but to have the opportunity to run those races all around the world was great and I would love to do it again one day. Not any time soon -- I still want to win a Sprint Cup championship, but I would love to go back.”

Michael Waltrip Racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Michael Waltrip , Brian Vickers , Eric Gilbert
Teams Michael Waltrip Racing
Article type Preview
Tags bristol, michael waltrip racing, toyota, vickers