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Patrick talks about first big Cup wreck

Danica Patrick's accident at the end of the first Gatorade Duel on Thursday stole the headlines from the race winners, and had even veteran racers wincing at the impact.
If Danica Patrick wanted to make an impression at Daytona, she certainly managed that: a head-on impact into the infield SAFER barrier at almost full speed during the first Gatorade Duel made even hardened veterans of the series wince in sympathy.

But Danica insisted that the Thursday crash wouldn't affect her performance in Saturday's Nationwide Series race or in Sunday's Daytona 500, which she will have to start from the rear of the field as a result of needing to take to her back-up car.

"We are not average people," she pointed out. "We race, I'm not saying we crash for a living, but it is part of racing for a living ... Do I like crashing? Of course not. I don't think anybody likes crashing, but it's part of the business and it's part of big pack racing like this."

Right up to the crash itself, Patrick had been enjoying the race and learning all the time. "It was good to run around and see even when I was further back to see how things happened, how lines moved and people used each other," she said. "I was relaxed in the car and I felt good. I felt comfortable. I feel more ready for Sunday."

She can take some reassurance that her first big wreck in the Sprint Cup series was nothing to do with her and that she was purely in the wrong place at the wrong time. "The first car hits the second car, as the second car hits the third car and then you know I was the third car. Sometimes there is just nothing you can do ... It is what it is. Honestly, that stuff happens. Everybody is getting greedy right at the end. To be honest I'm surprised it didn't happen at lap 10."

Replays showed that up ahead, Jamie McMurray had started to wobble through the corner, which knocked Aric Almirola down into Patrick and sent her flying off into the infield. It had all happened so fast that not even those involved had known what caused it until they saw the footage, with Almirola originally thinking he'd been turned by Patrick from behind.

"At first he said I hit his left-rear corner and then I was like 'woah stop the tape I didn't hit anybody! I had the wheels straight.' I was a little mad by that, but then I said 'ok so you got hit and you came into me,", she said. "He then sent me a text later on and said he saw the accident and he's sorry that it ended up like that and that he had talked to Jamie."

Patrick was able to climb out unassisted from the wreck of the #10 and walk to the medical car, but admitted she'd taken a few knocks. "I hit my foot on the clutch, which is my fault because I moved the clutch pedal towards me. I hit my arm on the side of the seat because of the angle I went in on the right front."

She added that she had been a bit sore in the evening but that she was feeling better on Friday morning. "My husband is a physical therapist so he's got a lot of good tricks and we've got a lot of good tricks on the bus to take care of things that don't feel right," she said. "That is why I feel better today."




Related Pictures

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Danica Patrick, driver of the #10 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet, looks on during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 19, 2012 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images for NASCAR)
 The #10 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet of Danica Patrick is towed back to the garage after a last lap accident in the Gatorade Duel at Daytona International Speedway. [Picture Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images for NASCAR]
Jamie McMurray, driver of the #1 McDonald’s Chevrolet SS, finished eighth and Kasey Kahne, driver of the #5 Great Clips Chevrolet SS, finished 35th Saturday, August 23, 2014 in the Nascar Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 23, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Danica Patrick, driver of the #10 GoDaddy Chevrolet, is involved in an incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 23, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 Doublemint Toyota, Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 STP Ford, and Clint Bowyer, driver of the #15 5-hour Energy Toyota, are involved in an on-track incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 23, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 ENEOS Chevrolet, is involved in an incident during the NASCAR Nationwide Series Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 22, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/Getty Images)
Ryan Blaney, driver of the #22 Discount Tire Ford, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 22, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Ryan Blaney, driver of the #22 Discount Tire Ford, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 22, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, poses with the trophy in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jake Crum, driver of the #01 My Freedom Smokes Chevrolet, and Bryan Silas, driver of the #99 Bell Trucks America Inc. Chevrolet, are involved in an incident during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, leads Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, and the rest of the field during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Danica Patrick, driver of the #10 GoDaddy Chevrolet, Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row Chevrolet, Trevor Bayne, driver of the #21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center Ford, Justin Allgaier, driver of the #51 Brandt Professional Agriculture Chevrolet, and Michael Annett, driver of the #7 Allstate Peterbilt/Pilot Chevrolet, are involved in an incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 17, 2014 in Brooklyn, Michigan.  (Photo Credit: Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Ryan Newman and Michael McDowell wreck at Watkins Glen International on Sunday, August 10 2014. (Photo Credit: Tom Pennington/NASCAR via Getty Images)
The #28 Texas 28 Spirits Stage Dodge, driven by JJ Yeley, is seen after an on-track incident during the NASCAR Nationwide Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen International on August 9, 2014 in Watkins Glen, New York.  (Photo Credit: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 Smithfield Ford, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Cheez-It 355 at Watkins Glen International on August 8, 2014 in Watkins Glen, New York.  (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/NASCAR via Getty Images)

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