Danica Patrick has decided to compete in the Oct. 21st Hollywood Casino 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at the newly re-paved Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kansas.
Competing in the race will give Patrick an extra day of practice, scheduled for the Thursday before the race weekend due to the 1.5-mile oval being resurfaced since the Sprint Cup Series race just this past April.
“With the testing rules the way they are, we can’t test with her at tracks where NASCAR’s top three series compete,” said Greg Zipadelli, Stewart-Haas Racing competition director and race strategist for Patrick. “That extra day of testing will be huge for her. With the amount of 1.5-mile ovals on the schedule, it made sense to have her compete at Kansas to better prepare her for 2013.”
Scheduling this race completes Patrick’s 10-race Sprint Cup schedule for 2012, which includes upcoming races at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway Aug. 25, Atlanta Motor Speedway Sept. 2, Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill., Sept. 16, Dover (Del.) International Speedway Sept. 30, Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth Nov. 4 and Phoenix International Raceway Nov. 11.
Patrick made her Sprint Cup debut in the season-opening Daytona 500 Feb. 27 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway and has since competed in the Southern 500 May 12 at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway and the Coca-Cola 600 May 27 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway.
Patrick is no stranger to Kansas Speedway. She scored her first career IndyCar Series pole in July 2005 and qualified third or better in three of her six starts at Kansas. Her lone NASCAR Nationwide Series start at Kansas came in October 2011 when she started 15th and finished 15th.
“I’ve always liked racing at Kansas Speedway,” Patrick said in a statement. “I think the extra day of testing will be very beneficial, not only to prepare for the race weekend, but to learn for the rest of 2012 and looking ahead to 2013 with Stewart-Haas Racing. The more track time I can get, the better, so I’m happy to be driving the GoDaddy.com Chevy at Kansas.”
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