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Brian Vickers’ Chase Diary – Pt.11

Brian Vickers looks back at the final round of the NASCAR season at Homestead Miami Speedway
With a 20th-place finish in Sunday's Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway Brian Vickers, finished the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup in twelfth place, but the driver of the #83 Red Bull Toyota remains optimistic for next season.

Before the 2010 season begins, Vickers will travel extensively, including a trip to Las Vegas for the end-of-season awards ceremonies, a Caribbean vacation for Cup champion Jimmie Johnson's fifth wedding anniversary and a possible visit to Asia.

In the final instalment of his Chase Diary, Vickers, who was one of the first to congratulate Johnson in victory lane, talks about the season finale, his prospects for the 2010 season, the fracas between Tony Stewart and Juan Pablo Montoya (who wrecked each other during the race) and the magnitude of Johnson's accomplishment.

“As far as the race goes, it obviously wasn't the way we wanted to finish the year. We wanted to go down there and get a win or at least have a good run. Unfortunately, we ended up 20th. There were times when we were better than a 20th-place car, but most of the night, we weren't that good.

“I still look back at the year and say that it's been a great year for us. We accomplished a lot of things and met all our goals, but we wanted to exceed them. We wanted to wrap the year up running well in the Chase, but unfortunately we missed the opportunity to do that, and Miami was our last chance to have a really strong finish to the year. We missed it a little bit. It's not the end of the world. We learned from it. We can get better next year, but it wasn't what we wanted out of the last race.

“I feel there's a lot of potential on the team. I felt a lot of potential on the team throughout the entire year. Hopefully, we can make a charge for the Chase again next season, but we're going to have to learn how to deal with being in the Chase and perform better in the Chase to make a run for the championship. I think that's part of being a new, young team.

“I saw the first (incident between Stewart and Montoya), when they got together and he (Montoya) cut a tyre down, when Tony turned down on him. I didn't see everything that happened or whose fault it was, but it didn't do either one of them any favours. Jimmie proved that you can think about things like that (the cost of aggressive action), and that's why he won the championship. Juan and Tony proved that they didn't think that far ahead, and it didn't work too well for either one of them.

“Being the last race and knowing that neither one of them could win the championship — even though they would probably lose some spots and some money — they were probably about at their wits' end and wanted to settle whatever they wanted to settle before the end of the year, make a point, prove a point, whatever it is they wanted to do.

“I don't want to comment too much on what happened, because I don't really know what happened. I just know they got together and they wanted to beat on each other. I'm not going to pretend like I've never done it before. If somebody hits me, I'm going to hit 'em back. I'm going to let them know that it's not acceptable.




Related Pictures

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Brian Vickers at Daytona [Pic credit: Getty for NASCAR]
Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1 Chevrolet SS, qualified for twelfth position Friday, August 29, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia. After a three-race absence, Tony Stewart has returned to the track at Atlanta. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS, qualified for fourth position Friday, August 29, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia. Newman is 9th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet SS, qualified for third position Friday, August 29, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia. Larson is 12th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Christa L. Thomas/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS, won the Pole position Friday, August 29, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia. It was Harvick`s sixth pole win of the 2014 season. He is 7th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Oral-B USA 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on August 29, 2014 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick (L), driver of the #5 Bad Boy Buggies Chevrolet, talks to Regan Smith, driver of the #7 TaxSlayer Bowl Chevrolet, in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Nationwide Series Great Clips 300 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on August 29, 2014 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Tony Stewart at Dover International Speedway on May 30 2014. (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/Getty Images for NASCAR Media)
Paul Menard, driver of the #27 Serta/Menards Chevrolet SS, finished ninth and Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 Dow Great Stuff Chevrolet SS, finished 28th Saturday, August 23, 2014 in the Nascar Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Alan Marler/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jamie McMurray, driver of the #1 McDonald’s Chevrolet SS, finished eighth and Kasey Kahne, driver of the #5 Great Clips Chevrolet SS, finished 35th Saturday, August 23, 2014 in the Nascar Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, finished fifth Saturday, August 23, 2014 in the Nascar Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet SS, finished fourth and Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet SS, finished twelfth Saturday, August 23, 2014 in the Nascar Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 23, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Tom Pennington/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, and his team celebrate in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 23, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 23, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 23, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 23, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 23, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

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