Danica Patrick, who made history by becoming the first female driver to have the coveted pole position at the Daytona 500, finished 8th on Sunday, the best ever finish for a woman in the race.
The driver stayed in the lead pack most of the race. "It was a solid day," Patrick told reporters after the race. "We stayed basically in the top 10 all day. It was fun when it got a little exciting."
Veteran Jimmie Johnson won the race, his second win at the Daytona 500. Patrick was also competing against her new boyfriend, fellow NASCAR driver Ricky Stenhouse.
As RadarOnline.com recently reported, Patrick began dating Stenhouse just weeks after filing for divorce from her husband of seven years, Paul Hospenthal.
During the race, Stenhouse was involved in a nine-car pileup and scraped the wall. Although he continued in the race, the accident took him out of contention and he finished 12th.
Patrick led the race for five laps.