Injuries in sports often lead to incredible opportunities. Most notably, Lou Gehrig got his starting spot on the Yankees when Wally Pipp was unable to play, and the rest is history.

Recent developments in NASCAR with Brian Vickers are not at that level, but are still notable for their own unique reasons. Vickers is a 13-year veteran of the sport, with nearly 500 races under his belt between the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Xfinity Series. He has six wins between those two series, and over 150 Top 10 finishes. Vickers’ career has been stalled on numerous occasions by health issues, in particular having to manage serious blood clots.

Now healthy and able to race, Vickers will take Tony Stewart’s place in the #14 car at Martinsville. This was to be Stewart’s last season before retirement, but he was affected by his own health issues (an off-road accident during the offseason). It’s kept him off the track while he recovers. In the meantime, Vickers (who is no stranger to health issues interfering with the ability to race) will take his spot.

Showing a great sense of humility, Vickers is happy to have the opportunity, but wants to give it back to Stewart as soon as possible. He said, "I can honestly say this: As much as I want to race this car as long as I can … I really want to see Tony back in it. I've been in his shoes. I know exactly what it’s like. It's his last season; he deserves to be in this car as much as he can be.”