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Danica Patrick shaken after wreck; Matt Kenseth has words for Logano

TALLADEGA, Ala. -- Danica Patrick was scared as her car caught fire after a hard hit with eight laps left in the Sprint Cup race Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway.

About the same time, Matt Kenseth was praying, as his car had turned upside down and was sliding on its roof.

Both drivers were OK following the accident, which was triggered when Michael McDowell tried to bump Patrick using a typical move that would allow them both to go faster. Patrick got turned and collected Kenseth, and both hit the inside wall hard.

"That's probably the most scared [I've been] trying to hop out of a car with a fire on the inside," Patrick said. "I haven't had fire on the inside before. I've seen it on the outside, but it got to the glove a little bit.

"Honestly, I was thinking about my hair. I've got a lot of hair, and I really don't want to lose it."

Patrick said she has "a pretty decent bruise on my arm and my foot." She had her chest X-rayed afterward because she felt a pinch when she breathed. The X-rays were negative.

"Everything is fine," Patrick said. "I saw my chest on the way out. It looks very symmetrical."

Although she could crack a bit of a joke, Patrick said it was one of the scariest accidents of her career.

"I was definitely worried when I got spun because there was a wall coming up really fast at a bad angle," she said. "I closed my eyes and hoped for the best. ... It hit really hard. The steering wheel is way out of place.

"I hit my foot, I hit my arm. There was fire on the inside of the car. It was a pretty big hit. It kind of knocked the breath out of me a little bit."

Kenseth wasn't scared as much as that he had that uncomfortable feeling of being upside down until his car flipped back over to stop with four wheels on the ground.

"I've only flipped a couple of times, and they both were at Talladega," Kenseth said. "All the time I'm upside down, I'm praying the whole time it lands on its wheels because I think I'll be pretty claustrophobic if it lands on its roof.

"The first hit was hard. The last one was pretty hard too. The rest of it was just kind of flying around waiting for it to stop."

The frustrating part for Kenseth is he felt he should've been running near the front instead of midpack. He was battling for position with Joey Logano, whom he felt forced him below the yellow line that separates the track and the apron, and he lost several spots. Forcing another driver below the yellow line is a potential penalty.

"I didn't think he ran me off -- he did run me off," Kenseth said. "I had a run underneath him, and he ran me under the yellow line -- not just a little bit, but he ran me so far down there that I couldn't really lift, and I couldn't get back on the track.

"It looked like there was no penalty, and we kept racing. I'm pretty sure he knew I was there. I didn't think that was the best move."

"I didn't think he ran me off -- he did run me off. I had a run underneath him, and he ran me under the yellow line -- not just a little bit, but he ran me so far down there that I couldn't really lift, and I couldn't get back on the track."
Matt Kenseth on Joey Logano

As he left the infield medical center, Kenseth had some words for Logano. Last year, Kenseth was suspended for two weeks for wrecking Logano in retaliation while nine laps down at Martinsville.

Logano dismissed Kenseth's anger.

"Get in line with the rest of them," Logano said when asked for his reaction.

Kenseth wasn't the only one upset. Patrick, who spent some time in the top 10 prior to that accident, was upset that McDowell drilled her too hard in that situation.

"I felt like the fact that there were eight laps left was a really, really long time, still and anything could happen -- on the good or bad side," Patrick said. "We were in the right position to ... get the best finish possible. I just felt like there were some cars really aggressive with hitting and bumping at the end, and unfortunately, I had one of them at the end."