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Vickers drops in to Daytona from 5000ft

Added to that, it wasn't the best of conditions for him. "We had rain, and the winds were going in different directions at different altitudes." But he said that the view of the 2.5 mile oval from that high up was simply unmissable: "It was incredible ... Absolutely beautiful. This race track is an impressive and amazing facility when you're standing here on the ground but at 5000 feet, it's gorgeous."

Vickers arrived safely in the Speedway, although the sodden infield grass presented a challenge to the actual landing. "The only problem is sticking the landing, when you are sliding through mud, water and grass and tarp." He laughed: "It's not the first time someone has barrel-rolled through the frontstretch at Daytona!

"Jumping into Daytona International Speedway was like my first jump again," he continued, adding that "Your first jump is something you are always chasing, but I think this topped it ... "I had a feeling in the pit of my stomach that was incredible. It was almost like starting a race here. It was like my first start at Daytona."

Vickers says that the life-threatening condition he had last year made him more determined than ever to get out there and do the things that he really wanted to, rather than assuming that they could be put off until next week.

"My point is that you've got to take reasonable risks", he said. "Don't do it for the sake of just doing it. But if you really enjoy it and love it, if it makes you happy, go do it. Because you never know. You could miss out on everything you love because you're afraid of getting hurt, only to find out that's not what's going to get you in the end anyway."

Vickers admits that "There were a lot of times when I had no idea if I was going to skydive again or race cars or any of this stuff for that matter," but then insists that the whole experience has had its upside. "I spent all last year training and preparing for this season and taking health to a whole other level. I was in good shape before, now I'm just better ... I'm up for anything now. I skydive, dirt bike, mountain climb.

"I haven't done a bull fight yet, but it's on the list!"




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Brian Vickers skydives in to Daytona International Speedway from 5000 feet to publicise the forthcoming Coke Zero 400 on July 2. Wednesday, June 1 2011. [Photo credit: Red Bull/Daytona International Speedway]
Brian Vickers skydives in to Daytona International Speedway from 5000 feet to publicise the forthcoming Coke Zero 400 on July 2. Wednesday, June 1 2011. [Photo credit: Red Bull/Daytona International Speedway]
Brian Vickers skydives in to Daytona International Speedway from 5000 feet to publicise the forthcoming Coke Zero 400 on July 2. Wednesday, June 1 2011. [Photo credit: Red Bull/Daytona International Speedway]
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