(Photo Credit: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
The big one.
It’s inevitable at Talladega. It can happen on the first lap or coming to the checkered flag. You never know. All we know is … it will happen.
That was the first thing I thought of when Denny Hamlin announced he was going to start his No. 11 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing at Talladega on Sunday and regular substitute driver Brian Vickers would finish the race. This would allow Hamlin to start collecting points again while decreasing his risk of injury to his back. There were so many questions around this situation: Would Hamlin practice at all? Qualify? Would he drop to the back and swap at lap one? How would the swap work with seats? If Hamlin uses Vickers’ seat, would that hurt his back? How would the swap impact his back?
SPEED Channel’s show “Race Hub” took an in-depth look at the intricacies of a driver swap, using the Dale Earnhardt Jr. / Martin Truex Jr. swap from 2004 when the two were teammates at DEI and Earnhardt had t...