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Talladega pileup: Big one hits early at Talladega with 16-car pileup

Talladega pileup: Big one hits early at Talladega with 16-car pileup, Kyle Busch nudged Kasey Kahne and sparked a massive pileup early in Sunday's Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway, causing 16 cars to be damaged in the process.

The wreck was similar to one in the Daytona 500 which also involved some of the same big names: Busch, Kahne, Kevin Harvick and Tony Stewart.

Others collected in the mess included Martin Truex Jr., Jamie McMurray, Marcos Ambrose, Jeff Burton, David Stremme, Kurt Busch, David Reutimann, Casey Mears, Scott Speed, Clint Bowyer and Jeff Gordon.

Most of the cars were able to continue, but Kahne and Harvick were among those who could not get back in the race. Democratandchronicle

The wreck also caught Brian Vickers, who had just subbed for Denny Hamlin in Joe Gibbs Racing's No. 11 car. After much talk and buildup, Hamlin was cleared by doctors late Thursday to return.

He drove 24 laps, then climbed out of a specially installed roof hatch when a caution came out for Trevor Bayne's blown engine.

Vickers hopped into the No. 11 car, making a seamless switch.

"The exchange went great," Hamlin said afterward. "That was about as smooth as it could have went for us. Everything went well."

Hamlin added: "Anything Brian gets us for points today is strictly a bonus."

But just moments after Hamlin said those words, Vickers got a piece of the wreck and had to go to the garage. If he does not return, Hamlin and his team will only have earned four points as a result of their efforts.

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