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DATE News (chronologically)
10/25/10
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'Girls' rule IndyCar
When IndyCar Racing was at its best, the best drivers were the most popular drivers.  The most popular football players are the best football players.  The most popular baseball players are the best baseball players.  Ditto for other sports.  But is racing really a sport?  It would appear not.  In American racing it seems sex sells and 'girls' rule per the following IndyCar.com article.

Danica Patrick is getting used to being honored by the fans of the IZOD IndyCar Series.

“Let me know what to do to get this again next year,” she joked as she accepted the Indy DownForce IZOD IndyCar Series Most Popular Driver Award via a taped video message.

Patrick and Pippa Mann were honored as the Most Popular Driver in the IZOD IndyCar Series and Firestone Indy Lights, respectively, during the INDY DownForce Banquet Oct. 23 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

It was the sixth-straight Most Popular Driver Award for Patrick, who has won the award since joining the series in 2005.

“I’m very flattered that I’ve received this award once, let alone six times,” Patrick said. “Every person has the ability to pick their favorite driver, and it can change so it’s a real honor to receive an award from the fans.”

Previous winners for the IndyCar Series include Sam Hornish Jr. (2004), Sarah Fisher (2001-2003), Al Unser Jr. (2000), Scott Goodyear (1999) and Arie Luyendyk (1997-1998).

Mann, who finished fifth in Firestone Indy Lights, was honored by the fans for the first time.

“A year ago, I didn’t know what DownForce was, so I made an effort to participate with them year,” said Mann. “It’s such an honor and such a flattering and fantastic feeling. Indy DownForce does so much to support the series to get this award is just incredible.”

The awards were determined by the vote of the fans at all Indy Racing League events throughout the season and on indycar.com. INDY DownForce, the Indy Racing League’s official fan club, facilitates the balloting.

Two-time Indy 500 winner Al Unser Jr., IndyCar Series driver Graham Rahal and Firestone Indy Lights driver Philip Major joined the 200 Indy DownForce members and their guests at the banquet, which capped a day of behind the scenes access tours at Sam Schmidt Motorsports, Target Chip Ganassi Racing and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Martha Meno of New Palestine, Ind. was selected as the organization’s Volunteer of the Year. IndyCar.com

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