There are plenty of reasons why Danica Patrick stays in the news. If it's not her famous temper, photo shoots for Sports Illustrated or racy television commercials, it's her impressive results on the race track. She is, after all, the first woman to win an Indy race and, after finishing third at the Brickyard this year, the most successful woman to race the Indy 500. But lately the news has centered over the future of her racing career.
Rumors first began to pop up that Danica could move on up to Formula One, initially linked with Honda and then with USF1 before Bernie Ecclestone put his foot in his mouth. Again. Most recently, however, Danica's been tipped to switch to NASCAR. But with the latest announcement, those rumors have been quashed. Well, sorta.
Announced live today in Times Square on ABC's Good Morning America, Danica has signed a "multi-year" deal (tipped to be three years) to stay in the IndyCar Series with Michael Andretti's team. The four-car squad is restructuring this year, with partners Kim Green and Kevin Savoree splitting off the race promotion arm (responsible for the races in St Petersburg and Toronto), while Michael Andretti stays on to manage the team that drops the Andretti Green Racing moniker in favor of Andretti Autosport. GoDaddy.com has signed on to continue its sponsorship of Danica's No. 7 car. Tony Kanaan and Marco Andretti are locked into long-term deals for two of the other cars, while the fourth car is expected to go to former Rookie of the Year and race winner Ryan Hunter-Reay.
The announcement of Danica's extended contract would seem to put an end to the NASCAR rumors for at least the next three years, but reports still suggest that the talented Miss Patrick could run a parallel schedule in the second-tier Nationwide Series while contesting the full IndyCar calendar as well. Busy beaver indeed.
[Source: Andretti Autosport]
ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT SIGNS GO DADDY AND DANICA PATRICK TO MULTI-YEAR AGREEMENTS
Andretti Autosport announced today it has signed domain registrar Go Daddy, the world's largest domain name registrar and Web hosting provider, to a multi-year primary sponsorship agreement and has also secured driver Danica Patrick for multiple years as the driver of the team's #7 entry.
The announcement came Monday morning as the #7 Go Daddy machine was unveiled by Patrick and team owner Michael Andretti live on ABC's "Good Morning America" in New York.
To see new photos of Danica and the 2010 GoDaddy.com IndyCar, visit www.GoDaddy.com/Danica.
Go Daddy is a leading provider of services that enable individuals and businesses to establish, maintain and evolve an online presence. Go Daddy provides a variety of domain name registrar plans and Web site design and Web hosting packages, as well as a broad array of on-demand services.
Go Daddy is also well-known for its Super Bowl commercials, in which Patrick has been featured three-straight years.
Patrick joined Andretti Autosport prior to the start of the 2007 season, and during her time with the team, became the first woman ever to win an IZOD IndyCar Series event at the 2008 Japan Indy 300 and also finished third in the 2009 Indianapolis 500 -- bettering the fourth-place mark she established during her breakout 2005 season. Patrick also drove to a career-best fifth-place finish in this year's IZOD IndyCar Series championship, which stands as her best result ever.
MICHAEL ANDRETTI, CHAIRMAN, PRESIDENT AND CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT:
"All of us at Andretti Autosport are looking forward to having Danica back with the team and are excited about working with Bob Parsons and everyone at Go Daddy as the primary sponsor on Danica's car. Go Daddy brings a lot of energy to our team and to the IZOD IndyCar Series. We're very excited about the opportunity to work with them in 2010 and beyond."
BOB PARSONS, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER AND FOUNDER, GO DADDY:
"Danica is the quintessential Go Daddy Girl. Danica is a beautiful woman competing in a male-dominated sport. She's passionate. She's focused. She's all about doing what it takes to win and we love that about her. Not to mention she's edgy, smokin' hot and as tough as any competitor anywhere. We are very good together."
DANICA PATRICK, DRIVER, #7 GO DADDY CAR:
"I'm happy to be able to announce that I'm returning to Andretti Autosport. Michael Andretti has helped me become a better driver and we hope to accomplish a great deal during the next few years together. Bob Parsons and Go Daddy have believed in me from the start. You know, my life long goal is to win the Indy 500 and I'd love to do that in the GoDaddy.com car."