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How Will Danica Patrick Do In The Daytona 500? [POLL]

Jonathan Ferrey/Getty

Danica Patrick will be starting on the pole for the 55th edition of the Daytona 500, making this year’s race very unique.  Women have raced in NASCAR and the Daytona 500 previously, but this is the first time where there has been a woman as popular and competitive as Danica in a race like this.

Plus, word is out that she is dating fellow rookie Ricky Stenhouse, Junior, which adds another interesting and unique perspective to the race.  We’ve seen father and sons compete (recently Dale Earnhardt, Dale Earnhardt Junior, Kerry Earnhardt), brothers compete (the Wallaces, Labontes, Burtons, Busches), but never has there been a couple, married or not, race in the same competition.

It introduces a unique perspective that in many cases hasn’t been shown in real life outside of films.  One example that comes to mind is the Ron Burgundy/Veronica Corningstone relationship in the Will Ferrell comedy Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy where Veronica Corningstone takes her shot in a field that had been dominated by men.

Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., has said that she would be just like any other competitor out there, but it is different competing on a racetrack with a love interest than with a sibling or related family member.  Kurt and Kyle Busch race each other every week (at least, when neither are suspended or in some sort of trouble), but if one beats the other, they still have Thanksgiving dinner together.  But in a relationship, could work get in the way of lasting relationship (or your relationship get in the way of work)?

It’s an interesting dynamic, one that will be good for the sport as it looks to diversify the drivers in the field.  Having drivers like Danica and Darrell Wallace, Jr., broadens the brand and the newsworthiness of NASCAR to markets and demographics that previously had no interest in the sport.

How do you think Danica will do this Sunday?

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