Most drivers love to see themselves in Sports Illustrated. It means they did something important like win the Indy 500. Danica Patrick appears in the most recent issue, but it's not for winning a race. Rather, her hot bod has landed the IndyCar driver in the annual Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. We're not sure how many shots of her appear in the actual issue, but the magazine's website has posted 44 images of her climbing out of a driving suit wearing a teency weency bikini, an image that will no doubt be conjured by many men when they see her race next.

Danica is a polarizing figure in motorsports because she doesn't shy away from her sexuality, and if anything uses it to her advantage. She's the first female in motorsports to not only be talented on the track, but also shrewd in business and able to capitalize on her money-making image. We'd all be kidding ourselves to think that Junior sells his expensive t-shirts to female fans just because he's a great driver, so it's hard to fault Danica for capitalizing on her looks, as well. On the other hand, it's also more difficult to take her seriously as a driver when she's topless.

[Source: Sports Illustrated]