Monday, December 7, 2009

Yes Danica, There Is a Santa Claus

And his name is Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

If today's media reports are true, Dale Jr. and company will make Danica Patrick's NASCAR wishes come true in 2010.

The long-awaited news broke today that the IndyCar star and erstwhile GoDaddy Girl will officially drive for JR Motorsports next year. The speculation is that she'll run a partial schedule in the Nationwide Series (about 12 races total) as well ARCA.

The official announcement will come tomorrow at 1 p.m. EST in Phoenix, and will stream the press conference live.

Though the potential Patrick/Junior partnership was one of the worst-kept secrets in all of racing, the offical word does lend a heightened level of anticipation to Daytona Speedweeks. Just imagine the papparazzi blitz that will descend on the infield when Danica makes her NASCAR debut.

And that's all well and good for now - considering how badly the sport needs ticket sales, television viewership and consumer dollars. But contrary to popular belief, this may not be a winner of a situation for Patrick. If she doesn't live up to the hype and show some promise early on, the "I told you so's" will commence and race fans will, once again, not take a woman seriously.

On the flip side, if she exceeds all expectations and starts out-racing the likes of Carl Edwards, Kyle Busch and (dare I say it?) Dale Earnhardt, Jr. himself, that could come with its own set of problems. As my five-year-old nephew said when I told him there would be a female driver in NASCAR next year, "Boys don't like it when girls win, you know."

Yup, NASCAR is a man's world, Danica. And not even Dale Earnhardt Jr. can do anything about that.


  1. She might be competitive in ARCA but in Nascar she will be up against 42 experienced, hardcare race car drivers. She won't stand a chance since she has no experience or technical knowledge.