Brian Vickers is kind of a computer geek. He loves his Apple stuff and can’t wait to get his hands on the latest hand-held device from Sprint.

“I’ve just always gravitated toward technology,” he said. “I was always on the computer at a very young age. I enjoy the latest and greatest gadgets.”

Just don’t expect the driver of the No. 83 Red Bull Toyota to update his Facebook status or pop off on Twitter while pitting during a race.

That’s just not his thing.

“I don’t think it’s an interesting or intriguing concept or technology to be completely honest with you,” Vickers said. “I just don’t want people to know where I’m at that bad.”

Besides, Vickers figures if you want to see how he’s doing check the TV every Sunday. The outspoken 25-year-old and his quickly maturing team are becoming a fixture in the thick of the Sprint Cup race.

Vickers finds himself a respectable 14th in the points heading into this weekend’s race at Martinsville as his Red Bull team is starting to make some serious headway in its third season. He’s already collected three top-10s through five races, a great start for a driver who had just 11 top-10s combined during his first two years as the anchor of Red Bull’s fledgling Cup program.

“For a brand new team just three years in, I don’t think we have a lot to complain about,” he said. “But obviously we want to do better.”

Finding a way to thrive on short tracks would help. While Vickers has found a formula that works on the average 1.5- to 2-mile circuits – he posted a 10th, an eighth and a fifth during a three-race stretch at California, Las Vegas and Atlanta – success in tight quarters has been harder to come by.

He has struggled to be competitive on the shorter circuits like Bristol, Martinsville and Richmond since leaving Hendrick Motorsports for Red Bull in 2007. Vickers has yet to crack the top 10 on the short tracks, and finished 29th behind winner Kyle Busch during last week’s stop in east Tennessee.

“The short tracks have not historically been our best tracks, but we have worked really hard the whole year to improve on the short tracks and I think we have come a long ways,” he said.

Getting a little racing luck would help. Vickers ran near the front during the fall race at Martinsville last year but dropped to 12th while trying to conserve fuel toward the end of the race.

A solid performance this weekend would help further validate the growth of Red Bull’s Cup program, though Vickers admits his team is very much a work in progress.

Though he’s pleased with the chemistry with his crew, he’s still trying to develop a rapport with new Red Bull teammate Scott Speed.

The former open-wheel driver replaced AJ Allmendinger in the No. 82 late last season and is off to a slow start in 2009, finishing in the top half of the field only once in five starts.

Vickers has tried to lend Speed a friendly ear, but knows their relationship is still in the early stages.

“He has a lot to learn about the cars, the tracks, the way we race,” Vickers said. “And (he’s) had some questions, but yeah, it’s not like we spend every moment together.”

While never shy about speaking his mind, Vickers is diplomatic when asked about Red Bull’s decision to pull Allmendinger out of the 82 in favor of Speed.

Allmendinger is 16th in points so far this year driving part-time for Richard Petty Motorsports, including a third-place finish in the Daytona 500. Speed is 36th in points as he tries to navigate Cup racing’s steep learning curve.

Vickers said he expressed his opinion about who should be in the 82 last year, but has stayed out of it since. Despite Allmendinger’s decent start, Vickers isn’t second-guessing Red Bull’s call.

“For me to say it was the right decision, the wrong decision now just because of the five races and one (being) higher in the points than the other, I think would probably be irresponsible,” he said.

There are plenty of other things to worry about anyway, like trying to find some friends out on the track. Vickers may have made some progress following a high-profile dustup with Dale Earnhardt Jr. during the Daytona 500.

The two were a lap down on lap 124 when Earnhardt tried to sneak by Vickers on the inside. Vickers went low to block, forcing Earnhardt below the double-yellow line. When Earnhardt tried to get back in line, he clipped Vickers starting a massive wreck that took out the leaders.

Earnhardt later apologized for causing the wreck, but not before Vickers gained some sympathy – and maybe a little more respect – for how he handled it.

Consider it part of Vickers’ still low-tech approach to racing. For all his love of gadgets, he knows success in the Cup series is built on relationships, with crew members, sponsors and fellow racers alike.

“It takes a long time to build (chemistry), but it only takes a few moments to erode it,” he said.

Sounds like a sage Twitter post, if Vickers was into that kind of thing.

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