NASCAR Sprint All-Star Notebook: Fan Vote Gives Danica Patrick Chance To Fine Tune Balky Car

(NASCAR Wire Service)

Reid Spencer ~ NASCAR Wire Service

Danica Patrick (Photo: Alex Trautwig/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Danica Patrick (Photo: Alex Trautwig/Getty Images for NASCAR)

CONCORD, N.C.— Sometimes it’s more productive to figure out what’s wrong with a race car, rather than what’s right.

At least Danica Patrick hopes that’s the case.

And, fortunately for Patrick, winning the Sprint Fan Vote on Friday night gave Patrick’s crew a chance to work on her car in preparation for Saturday night’s NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway (on FOX Sports 1 at 7 p.m. ET).

That race, in turn, affords Patrick an extra 110 laps to try to improve her equipment for next week’s Coca-Cola 600. Though Patrick won’t run the same car she uses for the All-Star Race in NASCAR’s longest event, the knowledge should transfer.

“I found a lot of things I didn’t like,” Patrick said after finishing ninth in Friday night’s Sprint Showdown. “So that usually helps springboard it to the next night… I wasn’t happy with it, so I hope that means that it’s going to be that much easier to make it better for (Saturday) night. We’ll just have to see.”

Patrick said she and her entire team could use a test session at a 1.5-mile intermediate speedway. Since NASCAR no longer allows discretionary testing, logging laps in the Sprint All-Star Race, courtesy of her fan base, is the next best solution for Patrick, who is both grateful for the opportunity and determined to make the most of it.

“I’m extremely fortunate to have some great fans,” Patrick said. “They’re very active all across all the social media platforms and just in general cheering for me out loud at the racetrack.

“I’m just extremely fortunate. I don’t take them for granted for a second. That’s why I want to do well, ’cause I want to do well for all those people that wear my shirt and wave my flag and wear my hat.”


In relative terms, 2015 has been a strange season for Kasey Kahne, starting at Daytona.

Why? Because, for one thing, Kahne didn’t wreck in the season-opening Daytona 500, a radical shift in fortune for a driver who had been wiped out in his previous six starts in the Great American Race, four of the accidents leading to DNFs.

This year, Kahne ran ninth in the 500, a considerable improvement over his average finish in the previous six races—30th. And with new crew chief Keith Rodden on his pit box this year, Kahne is 10th in points through the first 11 races of the season.

“It’s been nice not to be so far behind early in the year,” Kahne said Friday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, seven hours before he moonlighted in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and won his fifth race in six starts. “We got out of Daytona without wrecking and that was something different than I think the six previous 500’s or something like that.

“So it was nice to start off in the top 10 right off the bat. We’ve been able to do a pretty good job of staying in that top 10 since. The only reason we’re in (as low as) 10th right now is because of things happening. Tony (Stewart) got me at Bristol and then we got in a wreck at Talladega. That’s worth 60 points right there, so that’s why we’re in 10th.

“I feel like we’re doing a good job. We’re not where we want to be, but we’re much closer and we know the things that we need to keep working on.”

RaceDayCT One Mouse Click Ad

Follow RaceDayCT On FacebookFollow RaceDayCT On Twitter

Leave a Reply

Copyright 2018 E-Media Sports

Website Designed by Thirty Marketing