NASCAR

Danica Patrick Falters On NASCAR Bow

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Danica Patrick's NASCAR debut came to a premature end as she was involved in one of Daytona's all too common multi-car accidents.

Patrick, who only confirmed her entry in the DRIVE4COPD 300 after finishing sixth in last weekend's ARCA race, retired after her GoDaddy.com backed Chevrolet was heavily damaged in a crash just after the halfway point of the 120 lap race.

In truth Patrick never looked truly comfortable all race. After starting 15th the Indycar driver dropped back after two early cautions, struggling with an ill-handling car as she tried to stay on the lower line around the 2.5mile tri-oval.

She also seemed to struggle with bump-drafting, a tactic crucial to succeeding on restrictor plate tracks, and seemed on some occasions to have to be told by her team how to bump-draft with the cars ahead of her. She was lapped after she lost the lead draft, but was handed her lap back as the 'lucky dog' during the third yellow flag of the race, which flew on lap 51.

Back on the lead lap and with her car's handling improved Patrick was moving up through the order after the green flag, improving to 21st before being caught up when the accident began ahead of her.

Josh Wise, who was a lap behind, appeared to be pushed into Jason Leffler, before spinning back up the track into Colin Braun. Faced with Wise and Braun's car spinning through the tri-oval Patrick could do nothing but hit Wise's spinning Ford with her right-front, before hitting the outside with the same corner.

Though she brought her JR Motorsports car back to the garage she quickly retired, officially finishing 35th.

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  • Vince Pettit
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