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.

Verstappen doesn’t want F1 season to end after recent run of form

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Max Verstappen says he is not ready for the 2017 Formula 1 season to come to an end after enjoying a run of strong form through the closing stages of the campaign.

Verstappen endured a rocky run of form through to the end of the European season that saw him suffer a number of reliability issues and score just a single podium finish, taking third in China back in April.

However, the Dutchman has rallied to score more points than any other driver in the last five races, including victories in Malaysia and Mexico, as well as a podium finish in Japan.

Verstappen heads into next weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix chasing a third win of the year to sign off, but joked he does not want the season to end just as he’s got into a good groove.

“We will, of course, try and end the season with a strong result in Abu Dhabi,” Verstappen said. “Last year was actually quite a good race after skipping a pit stop following a spin at Turn 1, it was hard to manage the tires to the end of the race but we did it and finished fourth.

“I would say that my favorite part of the track is at Turns 2 and 3, the fast left, right. It’s also very cool driving underneath the hotel and racing in the darkness with all the lights.

“The final sector at Yas Marina is actually quite technical so you have to be really precise there, but it should also be our strongest part of the track.

“There are quite a few overtaking opportunities to make the race interesting, before the long straight at the hairpin and then at the end of the straight under braking for the next chicane section.

“Abu Dhabi is the last race on the calendar, but I don’t actually want the season to end. I’m really fired up at the moment and I just want to keep going.

“The nice thing will be to spend some time with friends and family over the winter break and then I will look ahead to January and get back into training before it all starts again.”