Danica Patrick not feeling emotional ahead of final Daytona 500

Danica Patrick not feeling emotional ahead of final Daytona 500

Patrick is the only woman to lead laps in the Daytona 500, win the pole for the Daytona 500, win an IndyCar race, and is also the highest-finishing woman in the Indy 500.

Ryan Blaney topped the leaderboard in Daytona International Speedway's opening weekend practice for The Clash on Saturday, rounding the track at 199.601 miles per hour in the No.12 Team Penske Ford. In January the team signed Earnhardt to compete in this year's historic 60th running of the Daytona 500, and the rest of the season. Earnhardt missed the second half of that season with a concussion, and Bowman was tabbed to fill in for 10 of those races.

Denny Hamlin, the 2016 victor, qualified second in a Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing with a lap at 195.092. "We don't want to crash the primary anyway, so we are going to be careful in the (Can-Am Duel qualifying races Thursday), then you don't have to worry about practicing too hard because you will have already had The Clash race". "I knew it was a special run at the 330-foot mark, and I even shut the auto off a bit early so we know we can improve upon those numbers at some point". "I was a little nervous for that second round, but we took off well on pit road and did everything I could do".

"I don't really watch a lot of racing when I'm still racing", Patrick said. "It will be a very exciting year for us", Cope said. But I'm sure it would have been extra, you know what I mean? You kind of got what you got.

Kurt Busch, victor of the Daytona 500 past year, was 17th fastest.

Three more Fords recorded top speeds in the practice, with Joey Logano clocking in at 199.543 mph in the No.22 Team Penske Ford, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. logging a lap in 199.508 mph in the No.17 Roush Fenway Racing Ford, and Brad Keselowski recording a speed of 199.490 mph in the No.2 Team Penske Ford. Ford drivers won all four of last season's restrictor plate races, where the strength of an engine is one of the most important tools. The team typically fields unfunded cars that run at the back of the Cup Series field but her effort will be fully-financed by longtime sponsor GoDaddy.

Danica Patrick's final NASCAR race will be next Sunday's Daytona 500.

The Homestead race, Patrick said, represented her end of the road as far as the grand passion of the moment.

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