Well, that might take all the quality rides out of the mix.
Richard Childress Racing has reportedly said its No. 27 isn’t an option for Danica Patrick at Daytona, according to a quote in Racer.com
“Danica Patrick is not a driver for RCR nor does it have plans to field a car with her as the driver for next month’s Daytona 500,” Racer quoted an unnamed spokesperson for Richard Childress Racing as saying,
But that’s a little different that what Childress told Motorsport.com. When asked about the prospect of having Patrick run for his team, he was non committal. “I’m not sure about that yet,” Childress said. “I can’t comment on that.”
That’s a very important development because that means all of the first-tier rides at Daytona are now taken. That leaves smaller teams without the traditional funding needed to field a car that can run at the front — which Patrick has said she desires.
Patrick has said she’s confident she’ll be competitive at Daytona. “We’re definitely pretty close on all that stuff, especially on the NASCAR side,” Patrick said in remarks to ESPN. “We’ll be announcing that as soon as we can. I wouldn’t do it if it wasn’t going to be a situation that would give me an opportunity to run up front and win the race.”
But now, it’s really hard to see how that happens.
Patrick get a huge boost when GoDaddy, her initial sponsor, said it would back in the Daytona and Indianapolis 500 races this season.
How perfect is this? I’m so excited!
Getting sponsorship is a huge first step that will now allow her to negotiate from a position of strength.
Both Dayton and Indy, with her in them, are sure to be ratings winners, as her fans — whether they be race fans or casual fans who want to see her final race on the track — tune in. She’s also been expanding her business empire and picking up followers who may be curious about these last races.
Patrick, 35, left Stewart-Haas Racing last year and said she wanted to finish her on-track career by racing in what is now being referred to as the “Danica Double” — the Daytona 500 in February and the Indianapolis 500 in May. But the plans haven’t materialized as quickly as Patrick thought, and she admitted that it was taking longer than she imagined it would.
Over the past few months there have been numerous teams that have had talks with Patrick — of those Chip Ganassi Racing comes to mind. CGR is one of the only teams to run cars in both NASCAR and IndyCar, but the talks have since come to an end between the two sides.
Schmidt Peterson Motorsports had a spot open up in one of their Indy cars but said Patrick running it for the Indy 500 isn’t an option because it would be a distraction according to team co-owner Sam Schmidt.
Now, with sponsorship, we’ll see which team she ends up with.