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February 25th, 2013
03:30 PM ET

Fmr. NASCAR driver Kyle Petty: Danica Patrick had a great day at Daytona 500

In case you doubted that it was Danica Patrick's day at the Daytona 500, grand marshal James Franco cleared it up, raising eyebrows with that opening. Patrick made history when she kicked off the race as the first woman to win the pole at the Daytona 500. She made history again as the first woman to lead a lap. In the end, she came in eighth place, the best finish by a woman in the history of the race. Jimmie Johnson claimed the top spot, his second time as winner there.

This morning on "Starting Point," fmr. NASCAR driver and SPEED Channel analyst Kyle Petty talks with CNN's John Berman on his overall thoughts on the race.

"It was a decent race, the first part of it," Petty says. "With the new cars, with the new Toyotas and Fords and Chevys, everyone is feeling this car out, the Gen 6 car all week. Once they got in the race, they got more comfortable with it the last 24, 30 miles of the race pretty good. Pretty fantastic."

"I think there were a lot of people disappointed. Denny Hamlin was disappointed where he finished. If you follow these guys on Twitter, there were a lot of people that thought they had better runs and didn't have the finish they wanted to show for it. Danica being one of them. She ran an incredibly solid, really good race. Wouldn't be a great race unless you win, but it was a good race. She ran solid, she ran in the top five, she ran in the top ten, still finished eighth. She should hold her head proud. I had to eat a little crow when I said she wouldn't do that well. But she had a great day," he adds.

Filed under: Daytona 500