GoDaddy teams notches 27th-place finish at Kansas.
Danica Patrick and the No. 10 GoDaddy Chevrolet SS team for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) scored a 27th-place finish in Saturday’s SpongeBob SquarePants 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City.
Patrick started the race from the 27th position and dropped back to 31st before the competition caution on lap 25. She radioed to the team that the car was loose, center-off, so crew chief Daniel Knost called the No. 10 GoDaddy Chevrolet to pit road at lap 27 for four tires, fuel and air pressure adjustments.
The loose-handling condition persisted on the subsequent run, but Patrick worked her way up to 25th before going a lap down to the leader at lap 71. When the caution flag waved again at lap 94 as she was scored in the 26th position, Patrick noted the rear of the car was “just too unstable.” While the race continued under caution, it started to rain. NASCAR issued the red flag and brought the field down pit road.
During the rain delay, Patrick and Knost debriefed and decided to make wholesale changes when the race restarted to improve the car’s handling. When the track was dried and the race resumed, Patrick was in position to take the wave-around and got back on the lead lap. She was scored in the 25th position when the field took the green flag at lap 107.
The caution flag was displayed again several laps later, and the GoDaddy team pitted at lap 121 for the major mechanical adjustments they’d discussed during the rain delay. On the short run, Patrick noted the car handled better in traffic, but as the run progressed the loose-handling condition resurfaced.
On lap 168, Patrick again went a lap down to the leader. The team pitted at lap 188 for tires and fuel, and when the caution flag waved at lap 207 Patrick was able to take the wave-around again, rejoining the lead lap in the 26th position.
She raced her way up to 22nd before the team made its final pit stop at lap 247. Unfortunately, the caution flag waved several laps later, and since a number of cars had yet to pit, Patrick ended up two laps down to the leader in the 27th position. She swapped positions with the No. 51 car in the closing laps of the race but was able to get back to 27th before taking the checkered flag.
“It was a terrible night for the GoDaddy team,” Patrick said. “We tried a number of things but couldn’t seem to get the balance right. The car was really loose for most of the race but got tight off the corner there toward the end.”