Treat Danica Patrick

like one of the guys. She earned it.

To her credit, she has chosen to compete in the same field as the men, playing by the same rules, getting no special favors. Whereas golf courses move the women’s tees closer to the hole, neither NASCAR nor IRL spots woman drivers any leads over their male opponents.

So, as for Danica Patrick, I say it’s long past time to give her credit where it is due. In my assessment, she was not a great driver in the IRL circuit, but she was respectable nonetheless.

How will she fare in the NASCAR world? We shall see.

That said, sportscasters can lay off the sexually perjorative terms.

In a related note, she is not off to a good start at Daytona: she wrecked on lap 2.

4 thoughts on “Treat Danica Patrick

  1. i don’t follow nascar, and i don’t know much about her. however, if she doesn’t want to be referred to as ‘sexy,’ then she needs to not model herself that way. a simple google search brought up a boat load of ‘sexy’ poses by her. she may be a great driver, but when she allows published photos of herself draped over a race care wearing (very well, i might add) string bikinis, she’s gonna be called ‘sexy.’

  2. @Ame
    The issues here are context and parity.

    If she were being interviewed by GQ, Maxim, FHM, People, or other non-sports-related venues, then the “sexy” tag is fair game.

    (A couple years ago, Neil Cavuto played that card when he interviewed her at Fox, and that was fair. Why? Cavuto is a business reporter, not a sportscaster. And Patrick’s modeling has nothing to do with sports; it is all about business. In that case, the issue of her sex appeal is totally apropos.)

    But if I’m a sportscaster, and I’m discussing the upcoming races, then the talk of her sex appeal has nothing to do with it.

    And keep in mind that I’m all about parity. Any number of male athletes have made big bucks as underwear models. Some have even posed nude for porn mags. They made millions off their “sex appeal”.

    That said, the last time I checked, scandals notwithstanding, reporters haven’t spent time interviewing players–who were preparing for upcoming games–about their “sex appeal” or even about their lays of the week.

    Ergo, Patrick–who has competed with the men, and has won once and had some decent finishes–deserves to be treated like any other driver when being interviewed about her sports-related matters.

    Anna Kournikova, OTOH, deserves no such treatment: she never won a single tournament in her own circuit, in spite of the fact that–except for the Williams sisters, who hadn’t quite emerged as greats in the sport at the time–the competition in her circuit was light.

  3. Danica Patrick deserves credit for a nifty racing move during last night’s lap 2 wreck. After Jimmie Johnson collected her car along with several others, she sailed off into the infield. She steered her car through a narrow gap between two others involved in the wreck, a maneuver more reflective of a veteran than a rookie. Had she hit one of those cars her night would have been over. Instead her crew was able to return her to competition.

    Patrick finished 38th, 64 laps down, but at least her car was still running at the end. That’s more than NASCAR veterans like Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Kasey Kahne and Juan Pablo Montoya were able to say.

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