196.434 miles per hour. That's the top speed hit by Stewart-Haas racing driver Danica Patrick during Saturday's qualifying for the Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway. Not only was that speed good enough to earn Patrick pole position for the race on Sunday, February 24, it is the fastest speed recorded in qualifying for Daytona since 1990.

"You can do anything you want to do, and gender doesn't matter," said Patrick. And she's right: Danica Patrick can now claim to be the first woman to win pole position in NASCAR's top racing division. Since this will be her first full year in the Sprint Cup, she's also the first rookie driver to score pole since Jimmie Johnson managed the feat in 2002.

So, how do you celebrate winning pole position at Daytona? "I'm probably gonna grab some beers," said Patrick. Sounds like a winning plan to us. Scroll down below to watch a video from NASCAR highlighting the historic event.


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  • 81 Comments
      Shiftright
      • 1 Year Ago
      "Danica Patrick Takes Pole!"...(juvenile snicker)
      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
      stratosrally
      • 1 Year Ago
      Good for her! I wish her the best of luck - and hope to see similar results like this in the future. NASCAR\'s own Shirley \"Cha-Cha\" Muldowney...
      RocketRed
      • 1 Year Ago
      Right on schedule, after that much publicized hatchet piece on her being two steps back for women. Maybe she is still not the Susan B. Anthony of race car drivers, but I have a feeling that success on the track will do more than enough to shut up the website columnists. Everyone is like, what for the race she will fail!!11!!. Frankly, with NASCAR, being a designed lottery at this kind of track, the pole is as impressive as winning the race.
      joe shmoe
      • 1 Year Ago
      no victory sex?
        • 1 Year Ago
        @joe shmoe
        [blocked]
      MrWhopee
      • 1 Year Ago
      Wasn't there articles recently about how she wasn't good enough, and was dragging women's stature down in racing or something?
      clquake
      • 1 Year Ago
      Too bad NASCAR's core demographics are racist, sexist white males.
        Hek!
        • 1 Year Ago
        @clquake
        Yes, because all white males are racist and sexist. /sarcasm
        Chase
        • 1 Year Ago
        @clquake
        clquake, the only bigotry I'm seeing is your post.
        ICantDrive88
        • 1 Year Ago
        @clquake
        Your comment itself is racist and sexist! How ironic!
      mbukukanyau
      • 1 Year Ago
      "You can do anything you want to do, and gender doesn't matter," that is not true, she cannot plant seed for one. She has to have someone plant it
      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
      BryNum
      • 1 Year Ago
      Danica is the Sharapova of tennis. Both haven't won Jack!
        Gr@y_F0XXX
        • 1 Year Ago
        @BryNum
        Sharapova has one 4 grand slam titles.
        carboy55
        • 1 Year Ago
        @BryNum
        If you knew weither sport you would have called her the Kournakova. Sharapova has won plenty.
        Chris Maxwell
        • 1 Year Ago
        @BryNum
        I think you mean Anna Kournikova, since Sharapova actually won Wimbledon...
        adrenalnjunky
        • 1 Year Ago
        @BryNum
        The proper epithet would be "..the Sharapova of Nascar" - and as pointed out by others, You either don't follow tennis, or meant Kournikova.
          BryNum
          • 1 Year Ago
          @adrenalnjunky
          My apologies for getting the names mixed up. I don't follow tennis and even more, women's tennis. I probably meant Kournakova. I believe they are both hot!
        • 1 Year Ago
        @BryNum
        [blocked]
      Devin Baker
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'm surprised she said 'grab some beers' and not 'grab some ice cold refreshing coors light. The worlds most refreshing beer'. All NASCAR is is a advertising campaign going in a circle.
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