Michael Waltrip Racing expects Brian Vickers to return from latest medical setback

Michael Waltrip (left), co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing, and Ty Norris, Executive Vice President of Business Development and General Manager of Michael Waltrip Racing, answer questions from the media prior to practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2015 in Fontana, California. Waltrip announced that Brian Vickers will not participate in this weekend's events due to blood clotting in the body. 

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When Ty Norris’ phone rang at 1 a.m. this morning, the news was not good.

Norris, the executive vice president of Michael Waltrip Racing, picked up his phone to hear exactly what he didn’t want to hear: On the other end of the phone was Brian Vickers, who told Norris that he’d had another occurrence of blood clots and couldn’t race this weekend

"He’s obviously disappointed in the result," Norris said of Vickers. "But Brian has a lot of things in perspective. … As a human being, he’ll be fine moving forward, and that’s the most important thing."

But if history is any indicator, Vickers might be out for quite some time.

"We don’t know how long he will be sidelined," said MWR founder and co-owner Michael Waltrip. "This is all very fluid and new information and we’re learning as we go."

There is no timetable for the return of Vickers, who in 2010 missed 25 races because of blood clots.

"He is more susceptible to clots evidently than you and I are," said Waltrip. "We knew that could be an issue. Are we surprised? Yes. Did we think it would happen? No. As far as Brett, he was here and he’s a part of the MWR family and in the system. He was doing some virtual testing for us this week, so he’s been plugged in all week long and he fits in Brian’s seat so there are no issues at all with getting Brett into the car."

Brian Vickers sidelined with blood clots; Brett Moffitt returns to No. 55

Waltrip, when asked by FOXSports.com if this latest round of blood clots could end Vickers’ career, said he thought the driver would return. "I know his heart and his passion and he would not say that," said Waltrip. "And so therefore I cannot say that. I guarantee you, he’ll tell you he’ll be back in a couple of weeks or a couple of months or whatever the decision that comes from his doctors that it’ll be. He’s certainly overcome a lot and I expect him to overcome this."

As far as a driver for No. 55 in the weeks ahead, Waltrip said, "for the foreseeable future Brett is definitely our guy," adding, "We’re going to get through this weekend and we’ll have a plan next week to share with everyone."

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