Danica Patrick to drive last 2 races for Chip Ganassi (2nd Update)

IndyCar is desperate for any driver that can bring new fans
IndyCar is desperate for any driver that can bring new fans

UPDATE Team owner Chip Ganassi has confirmed that talks between his team and free-agent driver Danica Patrick to drive for the team in the 2018 Daytona 500 and the 2018 Indianapolis 500 have broken down.

Speaking at the opening breakfast at the Performance Racing Industry show in Indianapolis this morning, Ganassi all but shot down the idea that Patrick would drive for his team at either event, saying "I think it has probably stalled a bit….the talks have maybe stalled." according to ESPN.com

"It's not anyone's fault of any reason, I think it is we, sort of, have different things in mind," Ganassi said. "Nobody is right or wrong here, but, yeah, (it's) probably not going to happen."

Multiple outlets have reached out to Patrick for comment, but so far have not heard back.

12/07/17 "I was a little taken aback by how much was made of it," Ganassi told RACER regarding the reaction to his discussions with the former IndyCar driver.

"Folks would like to see a lot of things. First and foremost, things like that have to make business sense to all the parties. I don't want to discourage the idea, but I think it's a small percentage of something happening. There's nothing imminent."

Chip Ganassi
Chip Ganassi

11/18/17 Team owner Chip Ganassi spoke personally with Danica Patrick and her representatives Thursday and Friday about the possibility of fielding cars for her in either the Daytona 500, Indianapolis 500, or both, but said he doesn’t yet have enough information to determine if participating in her farewell jaunt is feasible.

“I think it’s a great idea for her to do that," Ganassi said of Patrick ending her racing career at two tracks where she has enjoyed some of her greatest success. “I think it’s a fabulous idea, a fabulous marketing idea, it’s a fabulous opportunity and obviously the business side of the deal has to work. … I’m a long way from saying ‘Yes, I can do that.’"

Patrick has expressed confidence in being able to bring sponsorship to field both ventures. Ganassi said “I would think it would be better to do it with one team."

The team owner said he has not had time to consider when he’d need a commitment and firm details from Patrick’s camp.

Ganassi fields two-car teams in both the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and IndyCar.

One of Ganassi’s Monster Energy Series drivers, Kyle Larson, is a personal friend of Patrick who has in the past expressed an interest in attempting the open wheel classic. Ganassi said he doesn’t know if Larson, who had a breakout four-win season, is still interested but said fielding a third car for him in May wouldn’t preclude partnering with Patrick for a fourth. That said, Ganassi noted doubling his roster for the Indianapolis 500 is something he would be unlikely to attempt.

“I doubt I would do four," he said.

The only other team able to field rides in both the Monster Energy Series and IndyCar would be Team Penske, but owner Roger Penske said he has no plans to field five cars at Indianapolis again. Penske boasts a three-car IndyCar roster and will add a fourth in 2018 for three-time race champion Helio Castroneves, who will move the Penske’s sports car program next year.

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