NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
 
         === Patrick wins fan vote for final spot in all-star race ===
 
 Concord,  NC  (Sports Network) - To  no one's surprise, Danica Patrick won the
 fan  vote  to earn  the 22nd  and final starting  position in Saturday night's
 NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
 
 Patrick,  running  her first full-season  in the  Sprint Cup Series this year,
 will  make her maiden start in the all-star race. She finished on the lead lap
 in  ninth in  the  Sprint  Showdown (40-lap  preliminary  event). The  top-two
 finishers in the Showdown -- Jamie McMurray and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (Patrick's
 boyfriend) -- secured the 20th and 21st starting spots, respectively.
 
 Earlier  this  week, NASCAR officials noted  the fan vote winner had to finish
 the  Showdown and have his or her car in "raceable" condition as determined by
 Sprint Cup Series director John Darby. The rule change for the fan vote winner
 not  having to finish on the lead lap was considered as a benefit for Patrick,
 who  has finished on the lead lap in just two races this season -- the Daytona
 500 and Martinsville.
 
 Kasey  Kahne is the  only driver to win the all-star race after advancing into
 it by winning the fan vote. Kahne accomplished the feat in 2008.
 
 05/18 21:33:47 ET

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