Patrick confirms she is dating Stenhouse
Auto Racing Videos
Danica Patrick's personal life is no longer a secret — she's dating a fellow driver.
Patrick revealed to the Associated Press she and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. are a couple, ending widespread speculation about the nature of their relationship.
“I think I am just finally excited to tell someone about this,” Patrick laughed.
The couple waited until the end of Charlotte Motor Speedway's weeklong annual media tour to go public with their relationship, which started as a friendship as they raced each other the last two seasons in the Nationwide Series. Stenhouse became a mentor of sorts to the 30-year-old Patrick, who left IndyCar after the 2011 season to make the full-time switch to NASCAR.
“We are dating, and I know there's been a bit of a runaround this week at the media days, and poor Ricky got grilled (with questions),” she said. “It was out of respect to NASCAR, to all the manufacturers, the new cars, the teams, the sponsors, just to allow the news of the day to be about racing and not let anything interfere with that. So it's Friday now, so that's why we waited until the end of the week to be up front about each other.”
Stenhouse confirmed the relationship.
“Yes, we are dating,” he said. “I don't normally say too much about my private life, always been focused on the track. I didn't want to confirm at media day so that we could keep the focus on the season, the Gen-6 (car), my sponsors and team. That's what it's all about for me.”
Patrick remains one of the most recognizable drivers in auto racing, even if wins have been hard to come by. There was speculation that her appeal with advertisers had waned, but sponsor Go Daddy said Patrick will again appear in the website domain provider's commercials during the Super Bowl.
Patrick announced in November she and husband Paul Hospenthal were divorcing after seven years, and she said in the Jan. 3 filing that her marriage to the 47-year-old Hospenthal was “irretrievably broken.”
Speculation immediately shifted toward her relationship with the 25-year-old Stenhouse, who has never been married. While her policy always has been not to talk about her personal life, Patrick said she made an exception this time to end the gossip and so the two could be open about their relationship.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Chinese jet buzzes Navy aircraft, Pentagon says
- Roundup: Keurig strikes deal with Kraft on coffee brands; more
- Lopsided loss to Eagles shows Steelers have issues aplenty
- Harrison’s 5 RBIs help Pirates pound Brewers
- Steelers notebook: Keisel always hoped to return
- Sandusky cover-up case unusually shrouded
- Connellsville library director on move
- Rossi: Time with Penguins taught Bylsma importance of stability
- Mother Nature takes a swat at Western Pa. stink bugs
- Records: Steelers RB Bell admitted smoking pot before traffic stop but denied being high
- Pirates notebook: Prospect Sanchez makes 1st start at first base with Indy