Originally written on Start 'N' Park Blog  |  Last updated 10/15/14

CONCORD, NC - OCTOBER 15: Brian Vickers, driver of the #83 Red Bull Toyota, stands in the garage during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series NASCAR Banking 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway on October 15, 2009 in Concord, North Carolina. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Brian Vickers has been working on a Sprint Cup Series return for the past year and a half. That quest got a boost this past week when he was announced as the replacement driver for Denny Hamlin. Hamlin is recovering from injuries sustained during the last lap of the Auto Club 400 from the Auto Club Speedway. Vickers has already been lined up to run a partial Sprint Cup Series with Michael Waltrip Racing, but driving for Hamlin will add an additional four races to his schedule and hopefully impress car owners for a ride next year. “It’s a huge opportunity for me.  I feel like I’m very fortunate to have both of these opportunities — to be in the 55, which I consider a great car and then to go drive the 11.  I welcome the opportunity and the challenge — I look forward to being in it. Obviously, that team and that car have run good for a long time.  Darian (Grubb, 11 crew chief) has won championships and he’s a very good crew chief — I’ve known him for a long time so I look forward to working with him as well and everyone at FedEx.  Again, I reiterate it’s very sad how it happened because I’ve been on the receiving end of this.  I’m happy to jump in and do the best I can,” Vickers told reporters Friday at the Martinsville Speedway, site of Sunday’s STP Gas Booster 500. Vickers knows a thing or two about being out of a ride due to health reasons. In 2010 he had to step out of his ride for the majority of the season after blood clots were diagnosed in his legs and around his lungs. “Next week I’m going to be in the 11 car, which I’m obviously excited about, but sad how the opportunity came about.  I know what it’s like to be pulled out of your car for health reasons — I’ve been in that boat before and wish Denny (Hamlin) a speedy recovery.  I will do the best job I can for him and FedEx and everyone at Gibbs (Joe Gibbs Racing) and Toyota until he returns,” commented Vickers. When pressed by reporters on what the future could hold and if this could mean bigger things with Joe Gibbs Racing, Vickers basically said any opportunity could be a good one for next year. “I think anything’s possible.  I mean, they could clearly go to a fourth car, so could MWR (Michael Waltrip Racing) — so could a lot of teams.  I found definitely that I enjoy both organizations.  I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to run at Gibbs and MWR.  I’d love the chance to be in the 55 next year and for some reason that doesn’t or can’t work out then maybe there’s an opportunity at Gibbs as well, as you pointed out.  But, that’s so far off and it’s so many ifs and buts.  For me right now, the focus is Martinsville and then the focus will be Texas and to go do the best I can.  I think if we go out and run good and win and contend for wins and then the rest will take care of itself wherever it is,” said Vickers. It will be interesting how this plays into his future with both organizations. The first step to that takes place Sunday at 1 PM EST for the STP Gas Booster 500, which can be seen on FOX.

Jim Harbaugh once used player's blood as war paint

Bennett: Seahawks are ‘best defense to ever play football’

Ex-Ohio St. WR takes jab at Michigan's program

Michael Dyer academically ineligible, will miss bowl

Pro Bowl rosters announced

Red Sox all set with their starting pitching?


AFC playoff picture, Week 17

Fisher gets new contract, is now one of highest-paid coaches

Cowboys face tough situation with DeMarco Murray

Te’o to people making fun of fake girlfriend: ‘Find a new joke’

Brandon Marshall: Chicago is home with, without Jay Cutler

Kobe is finally going to start resting

J.R. Smith: Knicks' season has been a 'nightmare'

Did Clay take back wife after Murray cheating allegation?

Recruit takes pic of himself in bathtub full of letters

James Shields likely to land Cole Hamels-like contract?

Report: Man United targets Gareth Bale, offers $181M

Johnny Manziel admits he did not take job seriously enough

Has the NHL Winter Classic lost its luster?

Rex Ryan: I’ll win a Super Bowl as a coach

Report: MSU’s Pat Narduzzi could be next Pitt coach

Jeter parties with 30 model-like women?

10 biggest 'Scrooges' of the 2014 NFL season

Are the Padres a serious contender or merely watchable?

Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

J.R. Smith: Knicks' season a 'nightmare'

Bennett: Seahawks defense is best ever

Ex-Ohio St. WR takes jab at Michigan

Recruit in bathtub full of letters

Did Clay take back wife despite allegation?

Has NHL Winter Classic lost its luster?

Biggest 'Scrooges' of the NFL season

The 7 best sneakers released in 2014

10 NFLers who disappointed in 2014

Sam: Gay NFLers have contacted me

Cowboy McClain's house burns down

Things learned from NFL's Week 16

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.