Vickers drives smoothly to top 10 in first Gibbs start

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Brian Vickers’ debut race with Joe Gibbs Racing ended in the top 10, an eighth place finish in the No. 11 FedEx/March of Dimes Toyota in Saturday’s NRA 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at Texas Motor Speedway.

The result was overlooked given his teammate Kyle Busch’s win and two other issues of controversy after the race (Brad Keselowski post-race outburst and a man who shot himself during the race).

In his first start substituting for the injured Denny Hamlin, Vickers started 15th and made it to seventh just 40 laps into the 334-lap race. A consistent run from there saw him briefly in the top five and sixth after the last round of pit stops before falling back to eighth.

Vickers, who along with Elliott Sadler races with JGR in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, will both be in JGR Cup cars next weekend at Kansas. Sadler makes his first Cup start of the year in a fourth JGR Toyota, the No. 81 Alert Energy Camry.

Holmatro, INDYCAR renew partnership in five-year extension

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Holmatro, a long-time partner of INDYCAR and title sponsor of the Holmatro Safety Team, have renewed a long-standing partnership that will see Holmatro and INDYCAR continue their partnership in a five-year contract extension.

“Holmatro has been a trusted partner and supplier in Indy car racing for more than 20 years,” said president of competition and operations Jay Frye. “Holmatro’s growth parallels some of the great strides made in safety for INDYCAR drivers and teams. We’re pleased to see this partnership continue, as it is a great benefit to everyone in the paddock.”

Holmatro’s relationship with INDYCAR dates back to 1991, when they first supplied tools to the safety team of the CART sanctioned PPG IndyCar World Series. Holmatro branding will continue to be featured on the firesuits, vehicles, and transporters of INDYCAR’s safety team throughout the agreement.

“Holmatro is extremely pleased to extend our partnership with INDYCAR for another five years,” said Tony Barboza, general manager for Holmatro. “We’re extremely proud to be affiliated with the premier on-track safety team in the world. Members of the safety team serve on their home fire departments when not at INDYCAR events and, like them, we believe in constant improvement and innovation. When the race is for life, you can count on the INDYCAR Safety Team and Holmatro rescue tools.”