Jeff Gordon, Matt Kenseth and Danica Patrick react after their top-10 finishes at Martinsville Speedway.
Team communication, avoiding wrecks helped
Regan Smith spins out after bumping Danica Patrick , while Ryan Newman, Trevor Bayne and others make contact trying to avoid the spin.
NASCAR.com's Holly Cain hosts live chat with Danica Patrick
Gavin Grubbs, a 13-year-old STP ambassador this weekend in Martinsville, talks about his opportunities within NASCAR as a disabled child and how excited he is to interview Danica Patrick .
No. 10 driver finished sixth at Atlanta in 2014, now ranks 18th in standings Play: NASCAR Fantasy Live HAMPTON, Ga. -- Danica Patrick , 21st a week ago in the season-opening Daytona 500, returns to the site of her best finish in a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race this weekend as teams prepare for Sunday's Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway (1 p.m. ET, FOX). Patrick , beginning her third season of full-time Sprint Cup competition, finished sixth here last August, one of four top-10 results since she debuted in the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 10 Chevrolet. It's her fifth race with crew chief Daniel Knost after SHR made a crew chief swap late in the '14 season. Knost had previously worked with teammate Kurt Busch while Patrick's efforts had been under the direction of veteran Tony Gibson. "It went good the last time," Patrick said Friday of her last visit to the 1.54-mile track. "It probably sucked before that. That's just the way racing is -- sometimes you're good and sometimes you're not." Teams spent almost four hours on the track Thursday, testing the new 2015 rules package in two separate sessions. Patrick ended the first 18th on the board and was 14th in the final session. Patrick called Thursday's efforts "a good, steady day." "We found some things that were good and some ... that weren't as good," she said. "I feel like in a race weekend, if you can find one or two good changes to your race car that don't hurt it in ... any way but help it somewhere ... that you have a shot at a decent weekend and being competitive." Her first outing with Knost atop the pit box "was kind of a disaster," she said, referring to a 36th-place finish in the fall race at Texas last season. But the team closed the year with a 22nd-place result on the one-mile Phoenix layout and an 18th a week later in the season-ending stop at Homestead-Miami Speedway. She finished 28th in points, one spot below her 2013 results. At Daytona this year, where track position is often dictated by the whims of the draft, Patrick ran as high as the top 10 as well as outside the top 25. The same could be said for many of those competing in the season-opening event. She enters this weekend’s race 18th in the standings, with 83 career starts in the series. It's still a learning process, and the potential for continued improvement exists. "It is our unrealized potential that is exciting to me," she said. "It is my fourth year in stock cars (she ran a partial Sprint Cup schedule in '12 while competing fulltime in the XFINITY Series), and my third year in Cup. It's Daniel's sixth year in NASCAR and his second year as a crew chief. We don't have a ton of experience and you would think that there is only 'up' to go. "The potential of where we could end up and where we can get to is encouraging." MORE: READ: Latest NASCAR news PLAY: Sign up for Fantasy Live WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView today FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Paul Menard spins after bumping Joey Logano, causing contact with Greg Biffle, Aric Almirola and Jimmie Johnson.
Danica Patrick and Denny Hamllin involved in wreck during practice for the DAYTONA 500 that forces Danica to a back-up car.
No. 11 delivers emotional win for JGR
NASCAR.com's Chuck Bush recaps the STP 500 at Martinsville Speedway. Highlights include Chase Elliott's Sprint Cup Series debut, Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s shifter issues and Denny Hamlin taking home another Martinsville clock.