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February 15, 2013

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Ted Wolfram

I too started out, well questioning, but after watching the 2005 Indy 500 and how the fans stood as one and cheered, I (Yes I have "hardcard" credentials so I could get a close up view), I decided to get to know at least a little about her. I actually liked her "spunk" from the beginning, and after meeting her I began to cheer for her. Why? Think of how hard it is for a woman to compete on the same stage with men...and with an apology to Sarah... Danica did it better on the only stage that counts...THE 500!

I agreed with her going to NASCAR...escaping rather than leaving, a series that was declining.

Something else about the lady...she understands (which a lot of other drivers don't), that racing runs on one commodity...MONEY...and she works tirelessly for Go Daddy,Peak,Hot Wheels et al...and Bob Parson wouldn't be in racing except for Danica. So props to her.

Do I care about her love life? Not really, but if it pleases her 700,000+ Twitter fans and her followers on Facebook, and all the young girls (and their Dad's as well), and it brings any new fans....then it's fine with me if the press continues to question her. And she does seem happy and that may help her win.

And win she will! So haters unite...love and hate are companions...better run your mouths before she does.

So let me say...."GO GIRL"!!

Steve Wagner

Ted Wolfram - Solid Perspective!

vern

Pressdog-- that story surprised me as i thought you were a fan from the beginning but loved your story and the message it sends to all. My story is having watched some Indycar way back but then I stopped for a long time aside from flipping chennels now & then, but then in 2005 I heard rumbling news all over the sports networks etc that a 5ft 100 lb girl was running the 500 and had posted the fastest practice laps all week so it got my interest and tuned in and havent tuned out since. I also realised this is the young girl I saw yrs ago at a big GoKart event they had on TV back then and she had the big glasses and her name was Danica Patrick and then I realised it was the same girl now I was seeing recognising her name from long ago.

Regardless of her having some bad and yes embarrasing races in Indycar and now certainly in Nascar and other things I didnt like, Ive become a fan. Iam not a huge fan really like some who have pictures & merchandise all over their rooms & walls etc but I do have a few of her diecast cars from indycar and now Nascar. I also defend her against the nasty haters at many forums etc but Ive realised as you say, she never lashes out at the haters but does simply ignore them including some nasty media reporters as well. Iam starting to see if she can do that then so should I and that maybe Danica's greatest asset is her ability to ignore all the negative and just focus on the postive in her life. As the saying goes "the best way to deal with nasty people is to ignore them". Facts are-- if more people really paid attention and got to know her and her success story they might change their minds about being so negative but then again some people are just nasty & hateful--and thats sad.

Thanks for this story as I enjoy your comments & articles and your support of a gal who knows how to be successfull in a male dominated sport where most other females fail to succeed due to lack of money, opportunity or many other factors. Danica knows how to succeed and does whats necessary to market herself and her brand and has now reached the top level in motorsports which is considered the Cup level of nascar. Now more eyes will be on her again being the only FT female in the Cup series--should be interesting.

GeorgeK

Lordy that was a wonderfully well written unfolding tale of character development PDog!

Based on my sometimes negative observations of Danica's lack of winning and seemingly unrelenting media magnetism, I almost felt like you were talking to me. If it walks like a hater, looks like a hater, talks like a hater.....shit, I must be a hater!!! (But I really don't think so.)

I hereby promise to keep any future observations relative to her race results and hereby vow to also relegate my past perceptions to the recycle bin.

pressdog

Noooo, no no George. I don't consider you a "hater." I was describing my former self only above. But that brings up an interesting topic. What is a "hater?" My definition isn't just someone critical of Danica. Some Danica lovers -- who think she can't do anything wrong ever -- scream "HATER" at anyone who has a critical comment about her. Not me. My definition of "hater" goes beyond just commenting on Danica's driving ability or if she deserves attention, etc. I can handle reasonable negative opinions just fine. "Criticism" in the classic sense is talking about both the positive AND negative of something. Haters actively HOPE for calamity. Hope that Danica hits the wall and burns. That she gets humiliated and run out of town. Haters steadfastly refuse, beyond any rational evidence, to give Danica any credit for anything. If she wins it'll be a fluke or down to "best equipment." If she loses it's ENTIRELY because she just sucks, forget the fact that someone bashed into her. You always seem to keep your criticisms of Danica fair and at least based on some rational thinking, George, and never personal. I have no issue at all with that.

Grizzlor

I too have met Danica before, briefly, and she really is one of the most engaging sports stars I've ever met. Shame she's moved over to taxi's from where the real drivers race.

L. Pahel

Short and simple....nice story and I think she has earned a chance to give it a whirl!!! Attention and interest is what NASCAR needs again. If she provides it...so be it. Go Danica!!!!

John Gleason

I'am a #24 fan , but i'am starting to buy the Princess models .

Tammy Kaehler

I'd never watched an Indy 500 before her first, and I had tears in my eyes as she led the field. They rolled down my face as I heard the fans in the stands cheered. I'm a female who knew a bit about sportscar racing, but nothing about open-wheel, and she helped draw me in. I might not make the same choices as her (to wit: FHM photos, sorry, boys), but I respect the hell out of her making a living in a sport that requires some measure of talent and personality. As you say, PDog, she knows how to play the game. So yeah, you go, girl ... make whatever choice you want to make and keep working it. God knows the other boys do, too.

Rene H. Provencher

I have watched this young lady from the beginning of her career. I read articles about her driving go-carts. Her book. Her family. I love her because I always wanted a daughter, a daughter like her. Not afraid, tough, loves, has great appeal. She does not hate, yes she has a temper. But releases fast. Yes I write toe curling e-mails to people that bash her. I make believe she is my daughter. Same with, Jessi Combs, Liz Miles and a few other young ladies. I lost my ability to have kids because of an accident with a Nuclear Sub. Swallowing Coolant water from a reactor will do that to a man. Anyway, I will let the haters hate. But I believe more people love her then hate her. Some day I hope this old dog gets to meet this young lady, it would make me proud to call her a friend. I came back to NASCAR because of her, I watched Indy because of her. I had left NASCAR because of Jr's dad being killed. GO DANICA!

Jennifer Jensen-Morse

I've been a HUGE Danica fan since that 2005 Indy 500 ... I got chills watching her race because I've always loved open wheel racing and thought she was just cool. At the beginning she had a bit of a 'tude it appeared, but you weren't sure if that was what the media WANTED you to think, or if she felt the need to hold her own to get respect. I have ALWAYS appreciated her. She's been so kind to me and to my kids at autograph session at IMS. I defend her to haters on various sites because i become so incensed by their rude comments. I realize it's foolish to hate a hater... I was born and raised in Illinois, so I appreciate local references she makes from time to time (and I love hearing a little ChiCAHgo in her voice occasionally). I enjoyed NASCAR and have been a Smoke fan, but admit I've become a HUGE fan of NASCAR since she made her way over. I guess comments aren't to be a book, sorry. Bottom line, I appreciate your blog, appreciate DP and wish ONLY the best for her. Cheers to you making it through the 12-step program "Hi, I'm Pressdog and I was a Danica hater". Danica rocks and so do you!

00poboyracin

I said this on twitter but I don't have a lot of followers so I'll say it again here. If Danica competing in NASCAR encourages one little girl to say "daddy I want to drive a race car." It's worth all the press attention she receives. I race against a few female drivers and I respect every one of them. I hope more young ladies follow in Danica's footsteps.

SkipinSC

Well done, P'dog. I'll add my two cents to the equation. When last I attended the Indy 500, (2011), we were sitting in the top row, lower deck paddock. When the driver introductions were held there were some audible "boos" for Danica.

Funny thing, when she took the lead on about lap 160 after climbing through the field TWICE, I heard nothing but a roar. At least on THAT day, it was apparent to me (and my wife) that she had won over some fans.

Ken Galligan

I have watched Danica come up thru the throws of her adventure and was skeptical too, not a hater but wondered; does she have what it takes to make it? As an ameature photo-journalist, I got the chance to interview her myself at an Indy Race. I waited over an hour to finally talk to her, all while a veteran reporter chided me and said good luck with that one. Well, it turned out that, Danica gave me a 20 min. interview. I, too thought she was very genuine. The veteran reporter just shrugged as I walked by him and I couldn't resist retorting, "Dude, you must have an a, agenda with her!" I got one of the most memorable interviews I may very well have for the rest of my life. Not to mention at, Danicas' request, I got her autograph. A skeptical, but interested fan. Go Danica!

Kenny G

Frank Polack

Growing up I cheered for Janet Guthrie, Lyn St James and Shirley Muldowney. What Danica brings to the party is "the face". Just like I can spot AJ Foyt from across the paddock, Danica brings the fan closer than any of those other women ever did (OK, Shirley did have a movie made about her...). I've been a Danica fan since the beginning..I like her spunk..she reminds me of AJ, but in a kindler, gentler way. Great article. Wish more people would self-identify their irrational feelings for public figures (don't get me started on Daddy Earnhardt...)

Chiefswon

I have seen quite a few women racers in my lifetime. Usually they are field fillers, back markers in sub par equipment...but they give the press a diversion to report on. Rahal Letterman Racing gave Danica the chance to play on a level field...And she took it. In fact, she ran as fast as she could with it. And here in lies the rub...Yes there are drivers out there who are just as good, maybe even better..DP took advantage of her opportunities...Never apologize for good fortune. Great read PDog!

GeorgeK

The hallmark of great writing is when you can eloquently touch a chord that resonates with others, and at the least gives one pause to think, "Could that be me too?", on any topic.

Fans always have drivers they love and drivers they just don't care for, and that can evolve during a career. Look at the sea change in Jeff Gordon's fan reaction; universally loved when he broke on the NASCAR scene to near constant boos and debris thrown at him on track in the recent past.

I for one read your blog because of the provocative subject matters you address, such as this piece. I think most of your commentator's would also agree.

Your apology was not necessary and your follow up description of a Hater insightful.

Keep on keepin' on!

Dustin

P-Dog. As prose, this is a weak, unmanly attempt to say, "I'm sorry." As poetry, it is Brilliant! I've always been an admirer of The Danistar. I liked how you boiled down her Indy career: highlighted, competent and impressively consistent. Wonderful piece, P-Dog. I shall read on.

kjr

Never was a fan...but appreciated the attention she brought to indycar it helped put it back on the map...just like she is doing for nascar. Its fine if anyone is a fan of any driver for whatever reason it may be. But people love her and a lot hate her and I have no issues with that, everyone has a driver the cant stand or even hate. People will tune on to watch her because they want to see her win and others will tune in to see her fail...people do the same for Jeff Gordon. Its ok to root against her or another driver...we all root against the Yankees...don't we?

When I say that I was not a fan...I never hated her but never really cheered for her, people may think we all should, I never rooted for buddy rice...dose that make some one a hater . Her errors or tantrums were always entertaining...as were viso's or the bush bro's. To race u need money and she gets that part very well...with out the looks and photo spreads she would of had a hard time making it to where she is today. She has accomplished little on the track but that dosnt matter if u can bring in money off the track. Haters are going to haters and fan are going to be fans no matter what. I'm not a hater or a fan...

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