Patrick taking high speeds in stride in Michigan

Associated Press Modified: June 15, 2012 at 7:02 pm •  Published: June 15, 2012
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BROOKLYN, Mich. (AP) — With her NASCAR peers breezing around Michigan International Speedway at around 200 mph this week, Danica Patrick was asked to compare these stock car speeds to the even quicker pace of IndyCar racing.

"I don't want to play down anything to do with 200 miles per hour. It's good," she said. "But it is true. Going another 30 or 40 miles an hour quicker is significant. It definitely feels a little bit different."

Patrick's top speed for a full lap during Friday's Nationwide Series practice was 190.506 mph. That was one of the fastest laps during Nationwide practice, and Greg Biffle reached 204.708 during a Sprint Cup session in the afternoon. MIS was repaved during the offseason.

Patrick has only one top-10 finish on the Nationwide circuit this year, but a fast, wide track like MIS could benefit her. She won the pole at Daytona this year and finished 13th at Talladega.

"Speed's never been too big of a problem. ... For me it's more about the balance of the car," she said. "When the car is not right, everything feels sped up. ... Then once the car feels steady, calm and predictable and doing what you want, everything slows down."

The Nationwide Series will race at MIS on Saturday, a day before the Sprint Cup. Patrick finished 27th at MIS in 2010, before the repave.

"To be quite honest, I can't really remember what it was like in 2010, and I don't think I was very good," she said. "So it's probably nice that it's a bit different for me. Obviously, I have a lot more experience now."

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