While rumors are swirling as to what manufacture Red Bull Racing will field next season, it's marquee driver is convinced of one thing—a win is in the near future.
Vickers entered Sunday's race looking for a solid finish as his No. 83 Toyota is pushing towards its first Chase berth.
After collecting his third top-five of the season, Vickers moved up one spot to 15th in the championship standings, 120 points behind 12th-place Matt Kenseth.
Though the run was solid, Vickers is ready to visit Victory Lane for the first time since his tenure at Hendrick Motorsports.
"We're going to win one of these races," he said after the Allstate 400 at The Brickyard. "The whole Red Bull team is too good. The cars are too good. We're right there."
Vickers began the race in sixth-place and ran in the top-five most of the afternoon. His No. 83 Toyota paced the field for five miles, though it came during a green-flap pit sequence.
"It was a good race, but not satisfied—by no means," Vickers said. "We really wanted to come here and win this race. The 5 (Mark Martin) and the 48 (Jimmie Johnson) were really strong. I think when we were at our best, if we would have had the track position then we could have stayed out in front of them. It was very difficult to pass and track position meant a lot."
The top-five cut 26 points off the margin between Vickers and 12th-place. With six races left until the cut-off, Vickers must average a gain of 20 points each week to make the play-offs.
Entering Pocono this weekend, Vickers has 11 starts at the Tricky Triangle in Pennsylvania, with four top-fives and four top-10s, including a runner-up finish in 2008.
Vickers and the No. 83 team weren't the only Red Bull Racing Toyota to gain points this weekend—though Speed's gain was very minor.
After hitting the banks of Indy for the first time in a stock car, Speed struggled most of the day, eventually finishing 31st—one spot ahead of the No. 34 team, who he is battling for a spot in the top-35.
Speed felt his car was "spot-on" in the corners of Indy, but that the speed simply wasn't there on the straightaways.
"We can't beat ourselves up too much over this race," Speed said last Sunday. "We had a really good car. The balance was right, and we were really good through the corners. We just didn't have the speed. I want to thank all of the Red Bull guys for their hard work."
The finish gained the No. 82 team three owner points in the race to a guaranteed spot each week. Speed continues to hold down the 36th-place spot in the owner standings, a distant 187 points behind the No. 34 team.
Speed has one start at the Tricky Triangle in Pennsylvania. After qualifying 37th, he brought his Red Bull Toyota home in 32nd.
With 16 races remaining in the season, Speed's time is running out to make a charge towards a guaranteed starting spot when the cars hit Daytona in 2010.
Red Bull News
Though weeks ago it was said that Red Bull and Vickers had reached a formal agreement to keep him in the seat of the No. 83 Toyota, no formal announcement has been made.
Team Vice President and General Manager Jay Frye is expected to travel to Austria in the near future to meet with Red Bull officials. It is expected that the meeting will finalize a contract for Vickers, as well as which manufacture the team will field in 2010.
Until the deal if finalized, Vickers said he is, "keeping all my options open. The ball is in their court."
This article is also featured on Pit Road Report.
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