DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — A big first for Danica Patrick, but an even bigger second for Jimmie Johnson.
Patrick made history up front at the Daytona 500 today, only to see Johnson make a late push ahead of her and reclaim his spot at the top of his sport.
It was the second Daytona victory for Johnson, a five-time NASCAR champion who first won "The Great American Race" in 2006.
Patrick, the first woman to win the pole, also became the first woman to lead the race. She was running third on the last lap, but faded to eighth at the finish.
Johnson raced past defending NASCAR champion Brad Keselowski on the final restart and pulled out to a sizable lead that nobody challenged over the final six laps.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. settled for second place. Mark Martin was third.
Keselowski, who overcame two accidents earlier in the race, wound up fourth.
Patrick was clearly disappointed with her finish but admitted she wasn't sure what move to make if she was going to try for the win.