Danica Patrick is retiring from racing next year, but she’ll only participate in two races in 2018.
But Patrick is finishing her career at two of the races where she’s had the most success during her career. She announced that she’ll race in the Daytona 500 in the NASCAR Cup Series, and she’ll finish her career at the Indy 500 in the IndyCar Series.
While she’s never won the Indy 500, she’s submitted several great performances at the track and has a chance to win there to end her career. She is the first woman to ever lead the Indy 500, and she’s the first woman to ever win an IndyCar Series race.
At Daytona, Patrick became the first woman to ever win the pole in a Cup Series race.
It’s no coincidence Patrick decided to finish her career at these two tracks. She’s had success at both in the past, and if she is going to have a chance to win on her way out, these are the two places where she can accomplish that feat.
She told The Associated Press in a press conference about her retirement that she decided three weeks ago she wanted to end her career at the Indy 500.
“Nothing that was being presented excited me, then about three weeks ago, I just blurted out, ‘What about Indy? Let’s end it with the Indy 500,”’ Patrick said via ESPN. “This ignites something in me. But I am done after May. Everyone needs to put their mind there. My plan is to be at Indy, and then I’m done.”
Winning either of the races would be a storybook ending for her career, though there’s a much better chance of her winning the Indy 500 than there is of her winning at Daytona. Patrick has had far more success in the past in the IndyCar Series, and a win at the most recognizable race in the series would be a fitting end to her groundbreaking career.
Patrick was the IndyCar Series rookie of the year in 2005, and she won one race in the series during her career. Her final race will take place in May at the historic event.