Danica Patrick Refuses to Confirm She Has IndyCar Contract

UPDATE #3 We already made this rumor 'fact' last week based on our sources. But after finishing 19th in Saturday's IRL-season-ending Indy 300, Patrick said, "We know what we need to do, and we'll be ready for next year."

10/03/09 According to AR1.com sources, indeed Patrick is signed, sealed and delivered to stay with the AGR team in IndyCar and they will help her get a part-time NASCAR deal as well. We await the announcement.

** Patrick and her agent, Alan Zucker of IMG, continue to work on finalizing a contract with IndyCar Series team owner Michael Andretti. That the contract has not been officially announced is no cause for concern.

** That the contract has not been officially announced is not an indication that there is cause for concern. She admitted that sponsorship wishes are one reason why it will be announced at a proper time and place to get maximum benefit from the announcement, which will likely occur after the season concludes at Miami-Homestead Speedway on October 10.

** That Patrick met with Stewart to basically get advance and information on the proper way to get starting in either NASCAR Nationwide Series, Camping World Truck Series or ARCA races, similar to what three-time IndyCar Series champion Sam Hornish, Jr. did in 2007 before joining the Sprint Cup Series as a rookie in 2008. Stewart also drove in what was then the Busch Series in 1998 before moving up to Cup in 1999. Stewart confirmed that meeting to reporters at Atlanta on Labor Day Weekend but also told another reporter at Eldora Speedway last week that he was just “having some fun with the media."

** Most importantly, Patrick has been told by her agent to “keep quiet" about the progress in the negotiations.

“Lately, I’ve gotten in trouble for speaking about it and then I get in trouble from the media for not speaking about it so I guess I’m in trouble either way," Patrick said during lunch at the track on Thursday. “It’s just very interesting that the story from Atlanta was made to appear that I was leaving when the same information was the same statement I had made (to VERSUS.com) back at Infineon.

“I’ve been told not to do interviews or attend press conferences. I can’t do that. That would not be fair to my team, my sponsors, the media or the fans." Versus

10/01/09 If Danica Patrick knows what her future after this season holds, she's not saying. Patrick refused Wednesday to confirm widespread reports that she's agreed to a three-year extension of her IndyCar contract with Andretti Green Racing.

Asked specifically about the extension, Patrick simply shook her head, not saying a word.

Patrick is considered the biggest draw in the IRL, and her interest in moving to NASCAR has been speculated on numerous times in recent years. She has a close relationship with Tony Stewart, and he has said Patrick will eventually make the jump he did — from IndyCar to stock cars.

"I'm definitely looking at doing some NASCAR stuff," Patrick said, reaffirming what she's said often in recent months. "And when we figure out what that is, we'll announce it. But we haven't figured it out yet."

IRL officials have not commented about Patrick's future. Patrick was at Homestead-Miami Speedway with several other drivers Wednesday to test for the IndyCar finale Oct. 10. Earlier this season, Patrick insisted she wouldn't announce anything about her future until after this IRL season concludes. USA Today

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