Danica Patrick now has a sponsor for her career-ending duo of races, and it’s a familiar name and color.
GoDaddy, the website hosting company whose fortunes rose in concert with Patrick’s when it sponsored her across many years, has signed on once again to sponsor the “Danica Double,” Patrick’s planned career finale of the Daytona 500 and the Indy 500.
“There’s this great story,” Patrick told the AP. “I left IndyCar with GoDaddy on my car, I started NASCAR with GoDaddy on my car, I’m most recognized as the GoDaddy green car and driver, and so to finish up my career that way feels appropriate.” GoDaddy and Patrick teamed up for 13 Super Bowl ads, more than any other sponsor and star, and for years were synonymous with the company’s too-edgy-for-TV branding. GoDaddy has moved in a more restrained direction, and Patrick is moving on from racing, but the two joining together for two last rides seems an appropriate fit.
The hitch at the moment is the fact that Patrick doesn’t yet have a car for either race, but the arrival of sponsorship ought to solve that problem in a hurry.
Patrick made the decision to walk away from racing following six years of serviceable but not spectacular driving. Over the course of 190 races at the Cup level, Patrick notched one pole, seven top-10 finishes, and a season rank that hovered in the mid-20s. Once she and Go Daddy parted ways after the 2015 season, her mid-pack finishes became much less attractive when sponsorship was harder to secure. By the 2017 season, the writing wasn’t just on the wall, it was carved in stone, and she and Stewart-Haas Racing parted ways.
Patrick is transitioning from driver into lifestyle inspiration, with a brand of wine and a popular fitness book now on shelves and—yes, this is part of her story—a new tabloid-reported relationship with NFL quarterback Aaron Rodgers. She’s got the opportunity to completely change the narrative of her story now, and it’ll be fascinating to watch how the sport of racing bids her farewell.
Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or find him on Twitter or on Facebook.