Danica Patrick started strong but faded to a disappointing 21st-place finish in Saturday night’s Kentucky 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta.
Patrick, driver of the No. 10 GoDaddy Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), started 10th and was in the top-15 for much of the first half of the race. Crew chief Tony Gibson made good adjustments on the car, and Patrick looked to be set up for a top-15 or even a top-10 finish.
Things began to go away on lap 182 following a caution, when Patrick restarted seventh after not pitting. She fell to 20th by lap 201, and things got worse when, as she pitted on lap 214, the caution came out. Patrick was the “Lucky Dog” and got her lap back, but she had to restart 24th when the race resumed.
From there, Patrick gained three spots to 21st, but her racecar was just too tight to make up more ground, and she had to settle for the disappointing finish.
“I’m disappointed,” Patrick said. “I know Gibson is too. I’m not sure why it didn’t handle well in the last run. It was just too tight. It was good in the first half, but in the second half it wasn’t really good. It’s disappointing to say the least, because I think we could have finished better. It’s too bad for the GoDaddy team.”