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Gerhart takes Lucas OIl Slick Mist 200

Saturday, 06 February 2010 20:01 Patrick McNamara
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ARCA veteran Bobby Gerhart, who has been to victory lane previously at Daytona seized the lead with 23 laps to go and held on to win his 6th ARCA Daytona race as darkness descended on Saturday.

 

Bobby-Gerhart-visits-Daytona-Victory-Lane
For the sixth time Bobby Gerhart visits Daytona's Victory Lane.  Photo by Bob Costanzo/ARCA

The Lebanon, Pa. based racer wasn't sure he'd have enough fuel to make it to the end of the race, “We calculated we could run 66 laps (on a tank of fuel),” said Gerhart, who managed to complete 80 thanks to the typically large number of caution flags in this race. “I was coasting as much as possible under the yellow flag.”

The high profile driver of the Lucas Oil Slick Mist 200 driving the No. 7 GoDaddy.com Chevy of JR Motorsports was Danica Patrick who surprised many staying up front for much of the event and finished the race 6th after almost wrecking out at the midway point.

Only 26 cars out of 43 were still lapping the mammoth 2.5-mile track shortly after the scheduled halfway point. Patrick’s Chevrolet spent most of the race in the top 10 but finished sixth.

Patrick’s Chevrolet made contact with a similarly colored Dodge driven by Patrick Sheltra and dropped to 13th place by lap 52 of a scheduled 80, and two laps later, she tangled with Nelson Piquet Jr.’s Toyota and took a wild slide down the front straight and through the tri-oval grass, spectacularly managing to avoid contact with either the outside or pit walls.

Patrick rallied after the final caution period. It was an eventful, if not altogether successful, stock car racing debut for the Indy Racing League regular.

“The car started sliding around,” said Patrick, “but I thought, shoot, we’re not out of this. I was pretty excited to from last (actually 14th) to, I think, as high as fifth.”

Another violet crash, albeit involving just one car, occurred off turn two on lap 53, when Barry Fitzgerald’s Ford flipped multiple times while veering through the grass and pavement bordering the back straight.

Jill George walked away from a brutal crash in the fourth turn early in the event.

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