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DATE News (chronologically)
06/27/09
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Danica will struggle says Montoya
Danica could struggle in NASCAR
If Danica Patrick chooses to make the jump to NASCAR, she's going to have her work cut out for her, according to another former open-wheel star who made a similar move.

"Danica, I think she's got the talent and everything, but I don't think she knows what she's getting into," said Juan Montoya, the former Indianapolis 500 and Formula One race winner who switched to stock cars in 2006. The Colombian-born driver is enjoying his best season in NASCAR, with an average finish of 15.2 and a realistic chance of qualifying for the season-ending championship Chase.

But it's taken him three sometimes uneven years to get to that point, proof that the move from open-wheel to stock cars can be difficult for even the best of drivers. The stock car is worlds removed from the grip-heavy beasts Montoya drove in F1, or the IndyCars that Patrick is piloting now.

"They're so different to drive. It's not the same feeling. When you drive an open-wheel car on an oval you have the grip, you turn the wheel and it turns, you get on it and it goes and you get on the brakes and it stops. This, it goes more with the momentum. You've got to give time to the car and you've got to get used to the feeling that you've got to go fast when the car doesn't feel right," Montoya said Friday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

"With time, actually it becomes kind of normal. Like for me, driving the Cup car now, it's normal. I've finally got to a point where I go every week and I'm not surprised, it doesn't feel weird, it doesn't surprise me, it feels like what I drive every week now and that takes a long time. If she comes I'm sure she can do it but it doesn't matter if you come to a winning team or anything, it's going to take time." Yahoo! Sports

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