Making History: Danica Patrick Becomes First Woman to Win NASCAR Pole
NASCAR driver Danica Patrick made history on Sunday, becoming the first female driver to win a pole at a NASCAR race when she won the Daytona 500 pole.
Patrick was the eighth driver on the track in Sunday's qualifying session at Daytona and had the fastest qualifying time, covering the 2 1/2-mile Daytona superspeedway lap in 45.817 seconds. She averaged 196.434 mph. She is also the first woman to win a pole at any major auto race in history.
Next week, Patrick's car will start at the head of the field when the NASCAR season gets underway with the running the Daytona 500, which is known as NASCAR's Super Bowl and dubbed "The Great American Race."
Patrick drives for Tony Stewart's Stewart-Haas racing team, and this will be her first full season in the Sprint Cup series after coming over from IndyCar.
Patrick, who drives the No. 10 car, also revealed in recent weeks she is dating fellow NASCAR driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr., of Roush-Fenway racing.