BUSCH: Indianapolis: Brian Vickers preview

THAT FAMILIAR FEELING ... Brian returns to IRP for his second Busch Series race at the Clermont, IN venue. Last season, Vickers qualified 27th and finished the race in 32nd after dealing with a faulty alternator early in the event. Brian's first...

THAT FAMILIAR FEELING ... Brian returns to IRP for his second Busch Series race at the Clermont, IN venue. Last season, Vickers qualified 27th and finished the race in 32nd after dealing with a faulty alternator early in the event. Brian's first visit to IRP in June of 2001 came at the wheel of his USAR Pro Cup Series car. The then 17-year old Vickers jumped into second place in the USAR Pro Cup Series points battle with a 6th-place finish.

JONES AT THE HELM-- James Jones will assume the role of interim Crew Chief for the BLV #40 Dodge following the departure of former crew chief Patrick Donahue this week. "J.J." most recently served as car chief for BLV, the same post he held for Johnny Benson during his 1995 Busch Series Championship run.

LIGHTNING STRIKES TWICE -- Brian is hoping that lightning strikes twice this weekend in the form of his favorite EMP Dodge, nicknamed "THUNDER 2". BLV will bring the car to IRP hoping that it will produce similar or better results than its last run, Richmond, where Vickers' favorite ride produced the best finish(7th) of his Busch Series career.

"CALLING ALL CARS" ... Brian is looking forward to returning to The Brickyard on Friday during his trip to Indianapolis. As a 14-year old, Brian visited the historic venue with Eddie Wood of the famed Wood Brothers racing team and recalled the encounter:

"Eddie and I sat in turn one watching these little dots come at us out of Turn 4, and were in AWE when those open wheel cars zoomed past us at over 200 mph. I told Eddie then that one day I was going to get behind the wheel of one of those rockets!" Vickers got his chance to get into an open wheel car last year while testing his USAR Pro Cup car at Chicago. "They were running this open wheel school at the old Chicago 1-mile track and I got the chance to take 10 laps by myself in 'the Instructor Car.' They put a lead car in front of me to monitor my speed -- but 5 laps into the ride, I decided that he wasn't going fast enough. I passed him and had two "ride-along" cars try to chase me down. I was too caught up in the moment to stop, and faced a pretty bad scolding from the instructors when I finished my 10 laps. I'd love to run the INDY 500 one day, but I think I'll need to die my hair before I'll be allowed back in an open wheel car in the Midwest!"

VICKERS ON IRP -- "I'm looking forward to my third trip to IRP. It has more than one groove and it's a fun track to race. The very first time I came here, we qualified 6th and finished the race 6th back in the USAR Pro Cup Series. As a rookie in the Busch Series, it will be nice to race on a track where I have a level of comfort, instead of starting from scratch like we did at PPIR, where the closest I had come to racing was on my NASCAR Racing '99 video game.

-blv-

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Johnny Benson , Brian Vickers