Danica Patrick recorded the slowest time on the Darlington Raceway ahead of the Southern 500 on Friday.

Speaking to the press she explained that she realizes where she comes in the Sprint Cup pecking order.

She said, “I'm not coming in thinking I should be anywhere in particular based on my extreme lack of experience and knowledge of this place ... Darlington was chosen as a track to come to in a Cup car because of how difficult it is and because of how much track time it takes to get comfortable."

Patrick hit the wall once in the Nationwide car and four times in the Cup car.

"I definitely think getting through the night with a respectable night is what I'm hoping for in the Nationwide car…And as far as the Cup car, I just want to finish.  I just want to finish, which is going to be a challenge I think."

Thankfully Patrick’s fellow drivers had sympathy for her.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. called it "one of the toughest tracks that we run on.  I think it's great for her to come here and get that experience early for a full season next year ... Only a very few drivers come in here for their first time and really walk away with a successful weekend.  Most drivers that come here for the first time do struggle, so I wouldn't be too concerned if I was her if she didn't get the results that she was expecting.  This is a place that you have to learn the ropes and pay your dues or it will jump out and get you when you least expect it."

Bojangles’ Southern 500 starts at 5 pm (CT), Saturday, 12th May.

Listen to Patrick speaking to Sports Center about the race here.


Danica Patrick