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Danica Patrick in 8-car crash in NASCAR Nationwide’s opening lap

November 12, 2011 |  2:00 pm

Danica Patrick was among eight drivers whose cars were involved in a crash on the opening lap of the NASCAR Nationwide Series race Saturday.

Danica2Patrick's No. 7 Chevrolet slammed hard into the Turn 3 wall when the wreck occurred in the Wypall 200 at Phoenix International Raceway. Other drivers collected in the crash included Brian Scott and Reed Sorenson.

Despite heavy damage to the back of her car, Patrick was able to reach the pits for repairs and she was running 34th, two laps behind the leaders, when racing resumed. She had started the race 25th.

Aric Almirola was the early leader in the 200-lap race, followed by Clint Bowyer, Justin Allgaier and Carl Edwards.

There were concerns about the Phoenix track leading into the weekend because the one-mile oval recently was repaved, and drivers said the new surface was exceptionally slick and that passing would be difficult.

— Jim Peltz in Avondale, Ariz.

Photo: Danica Patrick shortly before the NASCAR Nationwide Series race Saturday at Phoenix International Raceway. Credit: Jennifer Hilderbrand / US Presswire