Danica Patrick's next race after the Daytona 500 wasn't a top-10 repeat.
A week after finishing 8th in the Sprint Cup Series' opening race, Patrick's car lost a tire on lap 176 exiting turn four during Sunday's Subway 500 at Phoenix International Raceway and smashed hard into the wall. After rebounding off of the SAFER barrier, Patrick's car collected David Ragan.
Ragan hit Patrick's at such an angle that it sheared off the sheetmetal on the left side of Patrick's car like a can opener, spraying safety foam from the inside of the car everywhere.
Patrick, who got out and walked away from the accident, wasn't the first driver on the day to suffer tire issues, as teammate Ryan Newman, among others, had previously hit the wall twice with right front problems. She said that there was no warning of any tire issues with her car before the crash and that the car suddenly drove straight to the right on her. Phoenix's flat layout is notoriously hard on brakes, especially those of ill-handling cars. Right front tires can have problems because of the buildup in brake heat from excessive usage in the corners.
Patrick officially started 40th and struggled with the handling of her car all day, never making much progress through the field before crashing. She finished 39th.
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