Brian Vickers Is Ready For Richmond

Brian Vickers

Taking home the winner’s trophy remains Brian Vickers’ priority at Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway, but he and his No. 14 Mobil 1 Advanced Fuel Economy Chevrolet SS team hope to educate race fans about NASCAR’s 2016 Race to Green initiative. Race to Green builds awareness around the governing body’s commitment to increasing the sport’s sustainability.

 

As part of Mobil 1’s third year as an official program partner, Vickers’ Chevrolet will carry a special paint scheme at Richmond spotlighting its fuel-saving brands of motor oils – Mobil 1 Advanced Fuel Economy and Mobil Delvac 1 LE 5W-30. Mobil 1 Advanced Fuel Economy is engineered for gasoline-powered engines to help increase efficiency and improve fuel economy by up to two percent. Mobil Delvac 1 LE 5W-30 is engineered to enhance fuel economy potential in heavy-duty diesel engines.

 

“It’s great to see Mobil 1 lending its technology to the NASCAR Race to Green program as it works to improve sustainability in racing,” said Vickers, who will make his sixth start in the No. 14 Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) as he continues to sub for regular driver Tony Stewart, who is temporarily out of the car with a back injury.

 

“The benefits of better fuel economy, thanks to Mobil 1, are noticeable for anyone who uses these products – whether it’s for me on the track or for fans driving to and from the track,” said Vickers. “Mobil 1’s support allows NASCAR to continue to deliver a great product, but in a more sustainable and energy-efficient manner.”

 

Vickers has every reason to believe he’ll have a chance for the race trophy. He’s won two of his 12 career poles at the D-shaped oval and has posted three top-10 finishes in 18 Richmond starts. His won’t be the only car to carry Mobil 1 colors. All race teams that choose Mobil 1 in NASCAR’s Xfinity and Sprint Cup Series races in Richmond will feature a special Mobil 1 Advanced Fuel Economy contingency sticker on their cars.

 

The ExxonMobil motor oils with fuel-saving benefits will be represented throughout the NASCAR Race to Green activations, including a presence in the NASCAR-produced Green television commercial to air during Sunday’s race and in each remaining Sprint Cup race broadcast of 2016. Additionally, the Official Motor Oil of NASCAR’s multiyear efforts will serve as the focal point of NASCAR Green’s social media and online “Partner Spotlight” Friday.

 

In 2014, the first year in partnership with NASCAR Race to Green, ExxonMobil converted NASCAR’s fleet and service vehicles to Mobil 1 Advanced Fuel Economy and Mobil Delvac 1 LE 5W-30. In 2015, ExxonMobil brought that support to the vehicles and generators in the roving NASCAR broadcast compound – prevalent at each host racetrack throughout the season. This week, Tony Stewart hosted a consumer event in Charlotte, North Carolina, providing Mobil 1 and Mobil Delvac 1 oil changes with fuel-saving benefits to race fans driving from Charlotte to Richmond.

 

The sustainability initiatives of Mobil 1 extend beyond NASCAR Race to Green. Since 2004, ExxonMobil has supported Earth 911 to help consumers with the challenge of properly disposing used oil. Through its website, www.Earth911.com, consumers can find information about reducing, reusing and recycling their used products in general, and identifying nearby locations specifically for used oil collection. For tips on responsible used oil recycling, visit www.MobilOil.com.

 

Brian Vickers, Substitute Driver of the No. 14 Mobil 1 Advanced Fuel Economy Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing:
What are your thoughts on racing at Richmond?

“I think just about every driver likes to race at Richmond. Heck, just about every fan likes Richmond. They get to see us go fast, but still be able to run side-by-side in the corners and maybe even do a little beating on each other. Drivers like it because you have your choice of different lines through the corners. Richmond is kind of an in-between track. Fans get to experience the thrill of speed while also getting the feel of side-by-side racing. Unlike most short tracks, you get a lot of side-by-side racing in the corners at Richmond. You also get two- and three-wide racing with guys trying different lines. That makes the track great and challenging. You have to get through the center of the corner and keep the car turning without getting loose in – that’s difficult.”

 

What do you expect Sunday afternoon?

“Whether we race at Richmond at night or in the daytime, I think it’s always going to be a battle. It’s going to be intense. Richmond is one of those races that usually turns into mayhem at the end.”

 

How has Tony Stewart impacted the No. 14 team in 2016?

“Tony has been great to work with. Tony and I have always had a mutual respect and always got along. He has been great to work with me. Well, I won’t say we always got along (laughs). But we’ve by and large almost always got along outside of the racecar. There has always been a level of mutual respect there. He helped me a lot when I was young, gave me tips as veteran drivers tend to do in the sport. Not everyone does it, but Tony has always been that guy where, when you are young and you are the new guy coming in, he is always quick to help. That was always great to have. Certainly we had our run-ins. When you race hard for over 10 years together, you are going to have a few disagreements, but nothing changed off the racetrack for us. Working together in the capacity we are now is unique and different. It’s really interesting. Now I feel like I know he is telling the truth (laughs). Before, I just thought he was, but I wasn’t sure. How he has stepped into this role as kind of an owner, coach, mentor – whatever you want to call it – has been really impressive. I know it’s hard for him not to be in the car, but I think he is really enjoying it. I think he is, in a way, you know you are thinking a lot about what his future looks like after this season, he has already announced this will be his last season. What does that look like for him? I think he has found a great balance, at least with me, of not micromanaging the team, not micromanaging the driver, giving great insight and tips and advice when it’s warranted, or he feels like it’s needed, or it’s asked for. But he doesn’t try to tell me how to drive the car. He doesn’t try to tell the team how to set the car up. He very much lets the team kind of run its course and be a guiding hand along the way.”

BRIAN VICKERS

No. 14 Mobil 1 Advanced Fuel Economy Team Report

Round 9 of 36 – Richmond 400 – Richmond

Car No.: 14 –   14 Mobil 1 Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing

Teammates:    Kevin Harvick, No. 4 Busch Light Chevrolet SS

Danica Patrick, No. 10 Nature’s Bakery Chevrolet SS

Kurt Busch, No. 41 Monster Energy/ Haas Automation/ Chevrolet SS

 

At Track PR Contact: Drew Brown with True Speed Communication (704-498-7596 or Drew.Brown@TrueSpeedCommunication.com)

Primary Team Members:

 

Driver: Brian Vickers

Residence: Miami, Florida

 

Crew Chief: Mike Bugarewicz

Hometown: Lehighton, Pennsylvania

 

Car Chief: Jerry Cook

Hometown: Toledo, Ohio

 

Engine Specialist: David McClure

Hometown: Sacramento, California

 

Engine Builder: Hendrick Motorsports

Headquarters: Concord, North Carolina

 

Spotter: Bob Jeffrey

Hometown: Bristol, Tennessee

Over-The-Wall Crew Members:

Front Tire Changer: Ryan Mulder

Hometown: Sioux City, Iowa

 

Front Tire Carrier: Brett Morrell

Hometown: Windham, Maine

 

Rear Tire Changer: Chris McMullenHometown: Canton, Michigan

 

Rear Tire Carrier: Josh Sobecki

Hometown: New Kensington, Pennsylvania

 

Gas Man: James “Ace” Keener

Hometown: Fortuna, California

 

Jackman: Getty Cavitt

Hometown: Owensboro, Kentucky

 

Windshield: Justin Peiffer

Hometown: Lebanon, Pennsylvania

 

Road Crew Members:

 

Truck Driver: Ken “Goldberg” Gober

Hometown: Derry New Hampshire

 

Truck Driver: William “Stump” Lewis

Hometown: Linkwood, Maryland respectively

 

Engineer: Lee Deese

Hometown: Rockingham, North Carolina

 

Mechanics: Tony Silvestri

Hometown: Sylvania, Ohio

 

Tire Specialist: Russell Simpson

Hometown: Medford, New York

 

Shock Specialist: Dave Hansen

Hometown: York, Maine

 

Pit Support/Fuel Runner: Daniel Coffey

Hometown: Granite Falls, North Carolina

Chassis No. 14-792
This car made its debut in April 2013 at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway. It started 21st but Tony Stewart wheeled it into the top-five prior to a green-white-checkered finish. Stewart was bumped out of the way in the two-lap scramble and, instead of finishing fifth, he wound up a disappointing 18th. Chassis No. 14-792 was poised for another strong finish in its second career start when it rallied from its 16th-place starting spot to lead 84 laps in July at New Hampshire. But while in second place on the final lap, it ran out of fuel and finished 26th. With interim driver Mark Martin at the wheel, Chassis No. 14-792 returned to New Hampshire in September, qualifying 18th and finishing 23rd. Martin drove this car again at Phoenix International Raceway in November, qualifying 16th and finishing 15th. Chassis No. 14-792 returned to Richmond in April 2014 with Stewart back at the helm for its fifth career start and first of 2014. It qualified 20th and finished 25th. The car returned in July for its third outing at New Hampshire, where Stewart rallied from 19th to seventh in the race’s last 50 laps. It raced again at Richmond in September, qualifying 19th and finishing 15th. In September 2015, Stewart drove the car to an 11th-place finish at New Hampshire. In 2016, interim driver Ty Dillon drove Chassis No. 14-792 to a 15th place finish at Phoenix International Raceway. He started 28th and quickly gained spots despite reporting a tight-handling car. A quick pit stop during a caution saw the No. 14 jump from 20th to 17th for the lap-57 restart. Dillon worked his way to 15th but could advance no higher despite extra laps in overtime.

 

Notes of Interest:
  • Vickers has three top-10 finishes and has led 53 laps in 18 starts at Richmond. His average start is 17.6 and average finish is 24. He has a lap-completion rate of 97.2 percent.
  • Vickers’ most recent race at Richmond – Sept. 6, 2014: The then-Michael Waltrip Racing driver started 18th and immediately reported his car would not turn in the corners. His crew made major handling adjustments during a lap-50 caution and Vickers drove from 28th to 17th during the next 75 laps. Vickers climbed as high as 10th at the midway mark as the team continued working on the car’s handling. He held his position in the second half of the race to finish 13th.Vickers’ won the first of 12 career pole awards at Richmond on May 14, 2004 – his first Sprint Cup race at Richmond. He also won the pole at Richmond on May 1, 2009.
  • Vickers owns career totals of three wins, 12 poles, 29 top-five finishes, 78 top-10s and 1,242 laps led in 323 Sprint Cup races.
  • His most recent Sprint Cup victory came at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon (July 14, 2013).
    • Vickers also owns victories at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway (Oct. 8, 2006) and Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn (Aug. 16, 2009).
    • His most recent Sprint Cup pole came at Talladega (Oct. 19, 2014).
  • Vickers’ last Sprint Cup race was the Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth two weekends ago. He qualified 13th and raced as high as fourth in the No. 14 before a pit-road spin and a late-race accident left him with a 37th-place finish.
  • Familiar Faces: Vickers’ most recent victory came with Rodney Childers serving as crew chief. Vickers’ most recent pole came with Billy Scott serving as crew chief. In 2016, Childers and Scott, who were with Vickers at Michael Waltrip Racing at the time of the victory and pole, are now crew chiefs at Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR). Childers oversees the No. 4 Chevrolet and Scott the No. 10 Chevrolet.Sunday will mark the ninth race for crew chief Mike Bugarewicz. The Lehighton, Pennsylvania native served as the lead engineer on SHR’s No. 4 car the last two seasons.

TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!

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