Danica Patrick: Latest News and 2014 Sprint Cup Ranking Ahead of Daytona

R. Cory Smith@@RCorySmithSenior Writer IJuly 1, 2014

Looking for her third consecutive top-20 finish for the first time this season, Danica Patrick fell just short at Kentucky Speedway. Despite finishing 21st, she comes into Daytona with confidence and hope that she can notch another top-10 result at the track.

Patrick started on Saturday night in 10th place and was running strong throughout the Quaker State 400, sitting in the top 15 midway through the race. But she struggled down the stretch, as she faded back to 21st and finished as the last car on the lead lap as Brad Keselowski notched his second win of the season.

That's a massive disappointment when considering how strong her car was leading up to the race, as Jeff Gluck of USA Today and Dustin Long of Motor Racing Network noted:

It wasn't a great finish, but it was still a good showing for the No. 10 machine. Heading into Daytona, the Stewart-Haas Racing driver has reason for optimism after her eighth and 14th results last season at the track.

Before the Sprint Cup officially gets underway at Daytona, here's a look at the standings and latest news for Patrick heading into the Coke Zero 400.

2014 Sprint Cup Chase Grid
Pos.DriverPointsWinsTop 5Top 10
1Jimmie Johnson5943612
2Dale Earnhardt Jr.5942912
3Brad Keselowski560289
4Carl Edwards536248
5Joey Logano519269
6Kevin Harvick509258
7Jeff Gordon6181613
8Kyle Busch508147
9Denny Hamlin455145
10Kurt Busch379133
11Matt Kenseth5550611
12Ryan Newman514016
13Paul Menard488039
14Kyle Larson474037
15Greg Biffle474025
16Clint Bowyer473026
28Danica Patrick322001
Danica Patrick 2014 Results
Quaker State 400Kentucky Speedway1021
Toyota/Save Mart 350Sonoma Raceway1118
Quicken Loans 400Michigan International Speedway2717
Pocono 400Pocono Raceway1637
FedEx 400Dover International Speedway2823
Coca-Cola 600Charlotte Motor Speedway439
5-Hour Energy 400Kansas Speedway97
Aaron's 499Talladega Superspeedway722
Toyota Owners 400Richmond International Raceway3534
Bojangles' Southern 500Darlington Raceway3322
Duck Commander 500Texas Motor Speedway2427
STP 500Martinsville Speedway1032
Auto Club 400Auto Club Speedway2714
Food City 500Bristol Motor Speedway3618
Kobalt 400Las Vegas Motor Speedway2221
The Profit on CNBC 500Phoenix International Raceway3336
Daytona 500Daytona International Speedway2740


Latest News

Notching yet another top 20 was clearly the goal for Patrick on Saturday night in Kentucky, but she ultimately fell behind due to a multitude of different reasons.

After taking a chance and not pitting on Lap 182, Patrick restarted seventh before quickly falling behind the pack. She ultimately was forced to pit on Lap 214 and fell a lap down, but she was once again rewarded with the "Lucky Dog" and finished on the lead lap just outside of the top 20.

Patrick spoke about her disheartening finish on Saturday night, per USA Today:

I'm disappointed. I know [crew chief Tony] 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.

While she was dealt a poor finish at Kentucky, Patrick still found time to have fun.

The SHR driver was challenged before the race by Clint Bowyer to videobomb him during a pre-race interview on TNT. Much to his surprise, Patrick kept her end of the bargain and gave viewers a treat during the broadcast.

Stewart-Haas Racing's official account provides another look at the stunt:

Her fun might not have to stop as the Sprint Cup circuit heads to Daytona for the Coke Zero 400. After nailing down a top-10 finish in her first full-time run at the track during last year's Daytona 500, Patrick captured a 14th-place result in last year's race midway through the season.

Here's a look at Patrick's results at Daytona during her career:

Danica Patrick Daytona Results
DateStartFinishLaps LedDriver RatingStatus
Feb. 27, 20122938034.9Running
Feb. 24, 2013185113.4Running
July 6, 20131114080.9Running
Feb. 23, 20142740253.6Accident

She will also be racing in a fresh paint scheme at the Florida track, as the SHR account notes:

Though she hasn't climbed up the standings in the last several weeks, remaining stagnant at 28th, Patrick could overtake boyfriend Ricky Stenhouse Jr. for 27th this weekend. Just 17 points behind Stenhouse, Patrick could use a strong run to finally move up in the rankings.

On arguably one of her best tracks in the series, Patrick will be looking to finally break through for another top-10 result this season. With just one to her name this year at Kansas, equaling or besting her eight-place finish from 2013 might help turn around the season.


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