After a forgettable Daytona 500 last week in Toyota’s NASCAR debut, Vickers’ provided some much-needed credibility for the auto maker, driving his red Bull Toyota over the finish line in 10th place on Sunday. Vickers, didn’t even qualify at Daytona while the four Toyota’s that did finished 22nd, 30th, 34th and 40th. “I think this finish means a lot for Toyota,”? he said. “To be a new team in such a competitive series and come in our first race and get a top 10, I’m so proud of everyone. I think everyone is stoked about the situation.”? With the remaining three Toyotas in Sunday’s race placing 32nd, 33rd and 39th, Vickers’ validation seemed that much more important. But certainly not all important. “On the one hand, given the situation at Daytona and that this is a new team, new manufacturer, I know everybody wants to jump up and down,” said Vickers. “The fact is, we’re all racers and we finished nine spots worse than we wanted to. It’s a tough balance. But at the end of the day, everyone is going to be happy.” Vickers, however, was quick to point out his car’s limitations. To win Sunday’s race, he said the No. 83 Toyota Camry required a different setup, something he wasn’t sure could have been done on pit road. But a top-five would have been attainable with flawless adjustments. Nevertheless, his team took a large step forward on Sunday. FONTANA – Brian Vickers finished nine places short of his goal in the Auto Club 500 at California Speedway in Fontana. He admittedly wanted to joyously jump up and down. “We didn’t have any problems with the car,” he said. “We learned a lot about the set up and what we can do moving forward.”? Gilliland’s 25thAfter an impressive Daytona 500 showing last week, former Chino Hills resident David Gilliland was a virtual non-factor Sunday, falling a lap behind the leaders early and never recovering on the way to 25th place. The driver of the M&Ms Ford ran in the middle of the pack virtually the entire race after starting 40th. “It’s not what we hoped for, but we came out of here with a 25th-place finish,” said Gilliland. “We weren’t good when we unloaded and we just never got where we needed to be.” As for the comparison between 25th place Sunday and an eighth-place finish at Daytona, Gilliland said nothing else compared either. “Just a different track, different tires,” he said. “Everything’s different.” Penalties for allThere were 17 penalties handed out Sunday, including Tony Stewart’s for exceeded the 55 mph pit-road speed limit while leading the race on lap 158. Stewart dropped to 23rd, sacrificing a two-plus second lead while enduring the pass-through penalty. Dave Blaney was hit twice in a row on the 91st and 112th laps for pitting before pit road was open and speeding on pit road. Gilliland’s lone penalty was for exiting the pits too fast on lap 194. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!