Danica Patrick thinks it would be nice if she got her NASCAR Sprint Cup career started at the Daytona 500.
The IndyCar star, who is moving to NASCAR full time next season, will run a limited Cup schedule in a car owned by Tony Stewart next year. She will mostly race at tracks where Stewart expects her to struggle, which makes Daytona even more attractive to her.
"I think it would be a good start," she told The Associated Press in an interview Thursday. "It would be nice if the Sprint Cup debut was at a track where I have the opportunity to finish well, especially given the idea that we're going to go to tracks that are going to be challenging and probably ones that I'll do the worst at, but I don't know yet."
Stewart, who was at an appearance with sponsor Office Depot in Richmond, said in a telephone interview that he has looked at having her run the sport's biggest race of the season, but hasn't decided yet if she will. He said he worked with Patrick in a two-car draft during a Nationwide series race at Daytona in July, and said "she ran really, really well all day there."
Stewart has said that Patrick, who also will race full time in the Nationwide series in a car owned by Dale Earnhardt Jr. next year, will drive in eight to 10 Cup races with an emphasis on learning. The complete schedule for the 2012 season has yet to be released.
"I think it's hard for anybody coming into this Cup series," he said. "I was intimidated the first time I raced in the Daytona 500. I went into that race just thinking about running laps."
As an owner, he said, "it's my job to make sure we keep her goals attainable." More at Fox Sports
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