|Date: June 18, 2017
Event: FireKeepers Casino 400 (Round 15 of 36)
Series: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
Location: Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn (2-mile oval)
Format: 200 laps, broken into three segments (60 laps/60 laps/80 laps)
Start/Finish: 23rd/37th (Accident, completed 190 of 200 laps)
Point Standings: 30th (176 points, 464 out of first)
Race Winner: Kyle Larson of Chip Ganassi Racing (Chevrolet)
Stage 1 Winner: Martin Truex Jr. of Furniture Row Racing (Toyota)
Stage 2 Winner: Martin Truex Jr. of Furniture Row Racing (Toyota)
Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-60):
● Danica Patrick started 23rd and finished 20th.
● The No. 10 TaxAct Ford Fusion team ran as high as 18th during Stage 1 as Patrick noted the car was “a little unstable on entry.”
● The team pitted twice for tires and fuel and made air pressure adjustments to address the car’s handling.
Stage 2 Recap (Laps 61-120):
● Started 19th and finished 26th.
● Patrick lost ground on the lap-67 restart and slipped back to 26th. She went a lap down to the leader during a cycle of green-flag pit stops and ended the stage scored 26th as she battled a car that was “tight on exit.”
● The No. 10 TaxAct Ford team pitted twice for tires, fuel and air pressure adjustments.
Final Stage Recap (Laps 121-200):
● Started 24th and finished 37th.
● Patrick started the final stage of the race from the 24th position but fell back to 29th after the restart. She was able to race her way back up to 24th by lap 140 and earned the free pass when the caution flag waved at lap 149.
● The team pitted twice for four tires and fuel during Stage 3.
● Patrick worked her way up to the 15th position when the field took the green flag at lap 190. She made a move to go low to pass a number of cars, but contact from the No. 19 racecar sent her into the inside wall.
● The No. 10 TaxAct Ford sustained significant damage and was unable to continue, leaving Patrick with a 37th-place finish.
● Patrick was evaluated and released from the care center following the accident.
● Patrick leaves Michigan with 176 total points for the season thus far. She is ranked 30th in the driver point standings.
● There were eight caution periods for a total of 34 laps.
● A total of 26 drivers in the 37-car field finished on the lead lap.
● Kyle Larson won the FireKeepers Casino 400 to score his third career NASCAR Cup Series victory, his second of the season and his second at Michigan.
Danica Patrick, driver of the No. 10 TaxAct Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing:
“That was an unfortunate way to end what had been a promising weekend for the TaxAct Ford team. I knew when there was a caution with about 15 laps to go that there would end up being another one. I had a good run and went for it and just got hit.”
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!