Danica Patrick and the No. 10 Nature’s Bakery Chevrolet SS team for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) had their day cut short after late-race contact relegated Patrick to a 35th-place finish in Sunday’s 58th running of the Daytona 500 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway.
Patrick started the race from the 16th position and ran as high as 10th at the midpoint of the event. She was scored in the 16th position at lap 157 when crew chief Billy Scott called the No. 10 Nature’s Bakery team to pit road for a green-flag pit stop. NASCAR penalized the team for going over the wall too soon on the stop, so Patrick had to serve a pass-through penalty, which put her back on track without any drafting help at the 2.5-mile speedway. She did her best to stay on the lead lap, but as the race remained under green-flag conditions, Patrick went a lap down to the leaders at lap 169.
When the caution flag waved two laps later, Patrick found herself one spot out of the “lucky dog” position. The team elected not to pit, and Patrick restarted in the 31st position with 25 laps to go. Less than 10 laps later, the No. 10 Chevrolet went spinning through the infield grass after left-rear contact with the No. 16 car.
The team pitted twice for repairs before heading to the garage. Once there, the team discovered the damage was too substantial to be fixed in the remaining laps, thus ending Patrick’s day.
“That pit road penalty really put us in a bad spot at the end of the race,” Patrick said. “I didn’t realize Greg (Biffle) was below me and I tried going low and we made contact. It’s a disappointing way to end the day, but overall, I’m happy with the way my Nature’s Bakery team performed throughout Speedweeks.”