Danica Patrick Ending Full-Time Racing Career, will run Indy and Daytona only (2nd Update)
No one appears to want to run Danica at Daytona or Indy
UPDATE Chip Ganassi Racing President Steve Lauletta said that Danica Patrick "would not be driving in either" this year's Daytona 500 or Indianapolis 500 for CGR. Lauletta on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio said that CGR, which operates teams in both IndyCar and NASCAR, "was talking with Patrick at one point."
But he added, "We're not talking any longer. ... We couldn't come to a solution that worked for both of us." Lauletta said that he "hoped something could be worked out for Patrick to get her into the Indy 500"
01/11/18 Nearly two full months have passed since Danica Patrick, 35, announced that the 2018 Indianapolis 500 would be the final race of her racing career. An entry in that race for her would mark a comeback to IndyCar after nearly seven years. But her odds of landing a ride in that race are looking slimmer than they ever have right now.
Prior to the final race of the 2017 NASCAR Cup Series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida, Patrick announced that she would race in the 102nd running of the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing” after racing in the 60th annual Daytona 500 in NASCAR just over three months beforehand. However, she announced that her full-time racing career would end when the 2017 season ended.
At first, it was speculated that Chip Ganassi Racing would be her team for both events. Chip Ganassi Racing are one of two teams with a team in both the Cup Series and IndyCar, and the other team of that type, Team Penske, are at capacity for this year’s Indianapolis 500. Chip Ganassi Racing made sense for Patrick.
However, her talks with Chip Ganassi Racing then stalled. This made Schmidt Peterson Motorsports her most likely landing spot. Schmidt Peterson Motorsports was set to field three cars in the race with two of those cars being driven by the team’s two full-time drivers.
However, the third and final projected driver for the team in the race, Tristan Gommendy, lost his ride as a result of the fact that the team’s partnership with Didier Calmels, who had planned on partnering with the team to field the 39-year-old Gommendy, fell through after they received backlash for dealing with the convicted murderer. This made Patrick a viable candidate for the team’s third seat.
Now Schmidt Peterson Motorsports have ruled out Patrick as a potential third driver. There aren’t many options left for her at this point as the field continues to fill up.
Aside of the fact that there hasn’t been much discussion about it, there is not much known about her landing a ride in the 2018 Daytona 500 yet either, so we won’t speculate as to what that might mean just yet even though that race is next month while the Indianapolis 500 is not until the end of May. Beyond The Flag
As you read it would happen for months on our rumors page, Danica Patrick hangs it up, will run just 2 races in 2018
An emotional Danica Patrick announced Friday at Homestead-Miami Speedway that she will step away from full-time NASCAR competition following Sunday’s season finale, but has plans to run the two of the world’s biggest races next year: the Daytona 500 and the Indianapolis 500.
“This will be my last season as a full-time driver,” she said through tears. “I feel like I should be doing this. I feel like this is where my life should be headed. And sometimes we just get kind of nudged there. Sometimes it’s big nudges and sometimes it’s little.”
The 2013 Daytona 500 pole winner and record-setting competitor is the first woman to compete full time in NASCAR’s highest level. She has competed full time in six total NASCAR seasons — one driving for JR Motorsports in the XFINITY Series level (2012) and the other five in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driving for Stewart-Haas Racing.
She has a career-best finish of sixth at Atlanta in 2014. Last week at Phoenix, she made her 250th start at the NASCAR national series level, the most ever for a female.
Interestingly, she has the same number of laps led (64) and top-10 finishes (seven) in both her XFINITY career (61 starts) and her Cup career (189 starts).
In addition to her NASCAR accomplishments, Patrick, 35, is the only woman to win an IndyCar race (2008 in Japan) and boasts the top finish ever for a woman in both the Daytona 500 (eighth place, 2013) and the Indy 500 (third place, 2009).
“I’m going to do the Daytona 500 next year and the Indy 500,” Patrick said. “So, I’m really excited about that. I think it’s going to be a great way to cap it off.”
Stewart-Haas Racing announced last week that Aric Almirola will replace Patrick in the team’s No. 10 Ford.
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