The Lady in Green known as Danica Patrick will face off against the Lady in Black known as Darlington Raceway for the second time in her Sprint Cup career this Saturday. After a roller coaster ride that is known as Talladega, this short track will definitely give us race fans a good show.
Patrick took to Talladega Super Speedway last weekend and tried to repeat her whirlwind weekend at Daytona. Running in the Nationwide Race with Turner Scott Motorsports with sponsorship from AccuDoc Solutions and GoDaddy, Patrick qualified 4th but unfortunately finished 39th after her tandem draft with teammate Kyle Larson went horribly wrong and sent her spinning through the muddy infield.
“I hate it for everyone at Turner Scott Motorsports, this is the second time they gave me great car this season,” said Patrick in a press release on her website. “We were just riding and trying to make our way back up to the front. I’m just disappointed that I wasn’t able to bring the AccuDoc Solutions/Go Daddy Chevy home with a finish that I felt like we could have gotten.”
Sprint Cup qualifying was rained out on Saturday leaving Patrick starting in the 23rd position. Patrick missed a big accident early in the race that claimed thirteen cars and showed car control that stunned her Crew Chief Tony Gibson.
“We were watching, and we were like, ‘Holy cow,’” Gibson said. “The next thing you know is she came on the radio, and she just aimed for the empty hole. I don’t know how she missed the No. 18 (Kyle Busch) there at the end. How she survived, I have no idea. The GoDaddy.com Chevy did good, and our spotter (Brandon Benesch) did an awesome job.”
Unfortunately, when the race was restarted after a three and a half our rain delay, she wouldn’t get so lucky. Running mid pack, an incident that started between Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and J.J. Yeley cause another big one.
“Ricky was trying to make it four-wide, and the No. 36 (JJ Yeley) came up to block him, and it turned him,” she said in a press release. “Then the No. 78 (Kurt Busch) was spinning; I went high, and somebody came up and clipped me and put me in the wall. I’m not sure which car it was. Honestly, it is just the way it goes. People forcing the issue. It is late in the race; I get it. But that’s what causes these accidents that makes speedway racing speedway racing. It’s just unfortunate for everyone on the Go Daddy team.”
Patrick has made two starts at Darlington, both coming last season. She started 15th and finished 12th last season in the Nationwide Series and then made her second start in the Sprint Cup Series the very next day and finished 31st.
“Last year, I ran there in the (Sprint) Cup race and it was basically my first Cup race, really. I ran Daytona, but Darlington was like getting thrown into the deep end. That was the purpose of it, to get seat time so I’m not thinking or dreading going there this weekend worrying about what that’s going to look like for me and how it’s going to feel. I have an idea now of how it’s going to feel and what needs to be done.”
So how will the Lady in Green fair against the Lady in Black? Tune in Saturday night to the Southern 500 to see for yourself. And don’t forget to vote for Patrick in the Sprint All-Star Race! Voting is open until 5pm ET on May 18th!
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