Red Bull Rundown: Day At Martinsville Includes Violent Wreck and Speeding Penalty for Red Bull Racing Team

Credit: Harold Hinson/Charlotte Motor Speedway
For the Red Bull Racing team, the race in Martinsville can be summed up in one word – disappointing. The day came to a halt for Brian Vickers and Kasey Kahne as one received a speeding penalty, and the other was involved in one of the most violent wrecks in recent years at the track. 

Things were looking up early on in the Goody’s Fast Pain Relief 500 for both Red Bull drivers with Kahne starting from the 3rd position and Vickers from 13th. It wasn’t long before both drivers began moving their way up – on lap 12, Vickers challenged Kyle Busch for 10th and on lap 32 Kahne led a lap after stealing the No. 1 spot from Jamie McMurray.

Shortly thereafter things started going down hill for both Kahne and Vickers.

On lap 55, Vickers, driver of the No. 83 Red Bull Racing Toyota, was sent to the rear of the field after receiving a speeding penalty on the exit of pit road.

Teammate Kahne, lost several spots on lap 122 after remaining stuck on the outside after a restart falling to the 18th position.

However, it was on lap 220 that the day took an unexpected turn for Kahne, driver of the No. 4 Red Bull Racing Toyota. A stuck throttle on the No. 56 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota of Martin Truex Jr. caused him to plow into the wall at a high rate of speed, meanwhile collecting Kahne and charging him like a bull in the same direction.

Immediately following the wreck, Truex climbed out of his car to check on fellow driver Kahne.

Both drivers walked away unharmed, but the race was red-flagged for about 25 minutes while repairs were made to the SAFER barrier.

At Martinsville, big wrecks come as a surprise because they are not typical of short track racing.  Kahne was even surprised himself at the intensity of this wreck.

"From my hit, it was actually a lot harder than I thought I could hit at Martinsville," Kahne said. "So Martin's was probably even harder than that.”

Kahne initially thought he had simply been run over by Truex, but quickly learned the crash was a result of mechanical problems with the No. 56 Toyota.

"Usually you get hit here and spin out and somebody's mad," Kahne said. "But in that case I knew that the throttle had stuck or something on Martin's car. He drilled me through the wall and then he followed with his.”

Truex expressed gratitude toward safety upgrades and for everyone who works on the cars and the SAFER barriers.

"Ten years ago, I wouldn't be standing here,” said Truex.

Vickers also made contact with other drivers throughout the race – Harvick on lap 231 and Bobby Labonte on lap 272. Vickers managed to salvage a 17th place finish, down four spots from where he started.

Both driver's finishes were disappointing compared to last year’s race at Martinsville when Vickers finished 6th and Kahne 17th.

Of his performance at Martinsville, Kahne said, "pretty good wreck. Just a bad day. I thought we were at least going to have a solid run."

Kahne now sits 15th in the point standings, down four spots and teammate Vickers remains in 24th.

Next week, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series visits Texas Motor Speedway for the Samsung Mobile 500.

Last year, the spring race at Texas brought very different results for Kahne and Vickers, who finished 5th and 38th respectively.

Kahne’s career includes a win at Texas in 2006.
Red Bull Rundown: Day At Martinsville Includes Violent Wreck and Speeding Penalty for Red Bull Racing Team Red Bull Rundown: Day At Martinsville Includes Violent Wreck and Speeding Penalty for Red Bull Racing Team Reviewed by Unknown on Tuesday, April 05, 2011 Rating: 5