Johnson Wins 2nd Daytona 500
Danica Patrick was first woman to lead the race
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 24, 2013 3:56 PM CST
Danica Patrick, center, prepares to get in her car at the NASCAR Daytona 500 Sprint Cup Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Sunday, Feb. 24, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla.   (Terry Renna)

(Newser) – Danica Patrick made history up front at the Daytona 500 today, only to see Jimmie Johnson make a late push ahead of her and reclaim his spot at the top of his sport. It was the second Daytona victory for Johnson, a five-time NASCAR champion who first won "The Great American Race" in 2006. Patrick, the first woman to win the pole, also became the first woman to lead the race. She was running third on the last lap, but faded to eighth at the finish.

There were several crashes during the race, none approaching the magnitude of the wreck that injured more than two dozen fans a day earlier in a second-tier race on the same track. Johnson raced past defending NASCAR champion Brad Keselowski on the final restart and pulled out to a sizable lead that nobody challenged over the final six laps. Dale Earnhardt Jr. settled for second as Hendrick Motorsports drivers went 1-2 in the new Chevrolet SS. Mark Martin was third in a Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota. Click for more, or an update on the injured fans.

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Feb 25, 2013 5:05 AM CST
This is for all those who say NASCAR isn't a sport. That is the same as saying all motor racing isn't a sport. Just because you can drive, catch a ball, hit a ball, throw a football, kick a soccer ball, return a tennis ball, run a hundred yards, swim, bowl or play golf. Does not put you on the same level as those that do it for a living. Like any other pro, you have to work at it and have a talent for it. Heck, I don't understand why people watch a golf match. I mean all their doing is hitting a little ball, walk a bit, hit it again, walk some more, then tap it into a little hole in the ground. How hard is that? So just because you don't understand or like it. Doesn't mean it isn't a sport. By the way, I hoped that the driver I like would have won the race. But he was involved in one of the wrecks. So maybe next time and yes, I'll be at the race. Because I live in the Phoenix area.