Danica to race Nationwide, ARCA for JR Motorsports

BY foxsports • December 11, 2009

It's game on for Danica Patrick, JR Motorsports and GoDaddy.com.

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Patrick announced her deal to drive for JR Motorsports in the NASCAR Nationwide Series in 2010 at Chase Field on Tuesday.

As FOXSports.com first reported last month, Patrick will make her stock car debut during the ARCA test at Daytona International Speedway on Dec. 18-20 in preparation for the ARCA season opener on Feb. 6. She is then expected to run in the Nationwide Series opener a week later at Daytona, the day before she is featured in a pair of ads for GoDaddy.com during the Super Bowl.

"We've all been working very hard for some time now to bring this all together," Patrick said at a news conference. "There's much relief there, but I'm starting to get a little bit nervous that now it's time to do my part of the deal and get out there in these cars and perform. It's no doubt going to be challenging."

Tony Eury Jr. will be Patrick's crew chief.

Kelley Earnhardt, sister of JR Motorsports co-owner Dale Earnhardt Jr., worked to bring Patrick into the fold. Asked about the team's expectations of Patrick, Kelley Earnhardt said, "I think it's reasonable for her to be in the top 15 of the series when she's running.

"Obviously, maybe the first few races, we'll see what that brings. She's got to get in there and get used to the cars. Hopefully, everybody will remember that and won't be so quick to judge, which is easy to do."

The Danica buzz will only remain if she comes over here and is successful and runs well.

If she comes to NASCAR and only runs in the middle of the pack, everybody will become a critic and begin saying, "I told you so" — whether they believed in her at the beginning or not.

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