Sidelined Vickers reveals cause of blood clot

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Sprint Cup driver Brian Vickers says that his latest battle with blood clots stems from the use of an immobilizing boot following a crash in the August night race at Bristol Motor Speedway.

The Michael Waltrip Racing pilot, who was sidelined earlier this month after doctors discovered a clot in one of his calves, told NASCAR.com’s Zack Albert that he was fitted with the boot after suffering a severe foot sprain in the aforementioned incident at Bristol.

Vickers has since been placed on blood thinners and is expected to return to the No. 55 MWR Toyota in time for the 2014 season.

“It’s not the clot and it’s not that I can’t race on blood thinners – it’s that I can’t crash,” Vickers said to Albert. “As long as I can promise my doctors that I will not crash, then they’re fine with me racing.

“Unfortunately, there’s a lot of moving parts in the car that I can’t control and there’s 42 competitors that I can’t control, so I can’t firmly commit to that. So they’d rather me not race. The risk is not even so much external injury, like a cut or something, it’s really more of an internal injury – they wouldn’t be able to stop the bleeding.”

Current Nationwide Series driver and longtime Cup veteran Elliott Sadler is replacing Vickers in the No. 55 for the final four events of 2013, starting with today’s Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 powered by Kroger at Martinsville Speedway.

Also, Denny Hamlin and Drew Herring are combining to fill in for Vickers in his Nationwide Series ride at Joe Gibbs Racing over the last three races of the year in that series.

Lewis Hamilton enjoys epic trip to NASA’s Johnson Space Center (VIDEO)

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Lewis Hamilton went to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston earlier this week, a thrill for the driver of a land-speed rocket for Mercedes AMG Petronas to then see actual ones.

In today’s pre-race coverage for the United States Grand Prix, NBCSN takes you behind the scenes of the trip in Houston. You can see that video, above.