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Danica & Ricky ?

Thu Jan 24, 2013 6:01 pm

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Danica Patrick and Ricky Stenhouse Jr.: Driver dodges rumors that he and Patrick are dating

Published Thursday, Jan 24, 2013 at 11:49 am EST Last updated 24 minutes and 41 seconds ago

Bob Pockrass Sporting News
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Amid rumors that Danica Patrick and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. are dating, Stenhouse wouldn’t go into details Thursday about his relationship with the soon-to-be-divorced Patrick.

Stenhouse, meeting with the media Thursday during the Sprint Media Tour, was asked directly about rumors and reports on various celebrity websites that the two Sprint Cup rookies are dating.

“I don’t like to talk too much about my personal life,” Stenhouse said. “This week is about … our season that we’re looking ahead to.”

Both Stenhouse and Patrick were rookies in the NASCAR Nationwide Series in 2010 and have raced together in that series the past three years. They developed a friendship, often sharing racing information and chatting at the track.

“We’ve got a great relationship,” Stenhouse said. “Obviously that started when she first came into the sport. We were both going to rookie meetings. It’s been cool to work with her in the Nationwide Series.

“I felt like she could come to me for advice with the experience that I’ve had.”

Their growing relationship has led to rumors and reports that the two may be more than friends, particularly with Patrick recently filing for divorce from her husband.

The National Enquirer and both recently ran stories about Patrick’s divorce and her relationship with Stenhouse.

Patrick, a former IndyCar star who has become a worldwide celebrity thanks to her success on the track and her racy commercials for sponsor Go Daddy, wasn’t asked specifically about the reports Monday but did say that she would not talk about the details of her personal life. She filed for divorce from her husband, Paul Hospenthal, in January and is looking to end her seven-year marriage.

Stenhouse, 25, is single.

When asked earlier this week if she had a rivalry with Stenhouse, the 30-year-old Patrick said “we’re good friends.”

Both Stenhouse and Patrick were among a group of NASCAR drivers who recently went to a Professional Bull Riders event in Winston-Salem, N.C., further sparking the rumors.

“A group of us went to the PBR,” Stenhouse said. “Obviously she was in town this week for media week. So there was a big group of us that went and hung out at the rodeo. It was a lot of fun. I think that was her first rodeo ever or PBR bull riding.

“It’s cool. Learning new things is fun. … Obviously it was a different experience for her.”

Both Patrick and Stenhouse struggled in their first year of Nationwide Series racing in 2009. Stenhouse went on to win the series championship in 2010 and 2011 while Patrick, who made the move from full-time IndyCar to full-time NASCAR in 2011, finished 10th last season.

“When she first came into the sport, obviously she is very outgoing and wants to learn as much as she can,” Stenhouse said. “I felt like our backgrounds were somewhat similar coming from light racecars, open-wheel race cars.

“… I’ve given her as much advice as I can.”

Stenhouse said even though they are friends, he wouldn’t race her any differently as they compete for 2012 Sprint Cup rookie honors.

“We’re going for rookie of the year,” Stenhouse said. “People always say, ‘I’ll wreck my mom to win.’ That’s a racer’s mentality. You go out and you want every spot on the racetrack.

“I want to win rookie of the year just as bad as she does.”

Patrick said Monday that she doesn’t see their rivalry on the track changing their relationship.

“That’s really interesting,” she said. “Both of us are running for rookie of the year and both of us want that. I don’t see any reason why it would change.

“He was always very generous with information about how to drive the Nationwide car, certain tips. … We’re good friends. It’s not really a rivalry.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Member "Chip" called this, back in Nov. ;-)

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Thu Jan 24, 2013 7:35 pm


Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Thu Jan 24, 2013 8:08 pm

Does it matter? That's between the two of them. I give them both props for not spilling anything personal regardless if they're more than just friends or not.

Inquiring minds need to get a life... That's just my opinion

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Thu Jan 24, 2013 8:23 pm


Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Thu Jan 24, 2013 8:31 pm

guess if it is true, she went from dating an older man might as well try dating a younger man!

Myself, I was rooting for her to date Danicafan :mrgreen:

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Thu Jan 24, 2013 9:48 pm

rumor has it they been dating since august, tisk tisk danica............

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Thu Jan 24, 2013 10:37 pm

Who really gives a flyin' f*ck??? If I was dating every woman I put my arm around in daily life, I'd NEVER sleep. Their bizz is PRECISELY that, lets be grown-ups and respect that?? :D

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:51 am

all i brought up was the whole married thing, i dont think that part is cool if it is true, that just turns me off, and i would say that if it was anyone followed in sports or music. once ya cheat, makes the 2nd time easier

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:20 am

"Danica & Ricky"

Ricky Bobby? :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Fri Jan 25, 2013 9:58 am

just read at fox sports that danica confirmed they were dating.

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:05 am

I reckon this relationship won't really be serious until they're "Rickica". :P

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:43 pm

“It’s cool. Learning new things is fun. … Obviously it was a different experience for her.”...sorry that just strikes me as funny....

I personally want to call them....Stenica!!

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Fri Jan 25, 2013 4:46 pm

Link - ... -jr-012513


Updated Jan 25, 2013 2:56 PM ET

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 have a boyfriend, his name is Richard,'' she said during an exclusive telephone interview with AP.

''I think I am just finally excited to tell someone about this,'' Patrick laughed, sounding almost giddy as she said the two-time Nationwide champion's middle name is Lynn and he prefers she use his first name.

The couple waited until the end of Charlotte Motor Speedway's week long 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 next month.

Patrick announced in November she and husband Paul Hospenthal were divorcing after seven years, and 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 has always 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.

''I think that moving forward into the year, it's a matter of do you say anything at all, or do you just carry on?'' she said. ''As opposed to speculation and people making up their own stories or talking amongst themselves or us feeling uncomfortable walking into each other's (motorhomes) moving forward, or around our teams or anything, it's just easier to be up front and get it out of the way then to have any kind of awkward speculation.''

Stenhouse was asked during the media tour's stop at Roush Fenway Racing if he was dating Patrick. He dodged the question, saying ''we've got a great relationship'' and then turned attention back to racing.

The subject will be hard for the two to avoid as they compete against each other this season for rookie of the year honors in NASCAR's top Sprint Cup Series. Both are moving up from the second-tier Nationwide Series at the same time.

Patrick said she won't race Stenhouse any differently.

''Obviously, we've been racing together for a couple years now, him and I have always gotten along, we've always had a lot of respect for each other on the track, there's never been an issue out there,'' she said. ''I always say I'll race people how they race me until they do something to make me change my mind. I don't anticipate that changing at all, or us having any issues on the track.''

Stenhouse echoed that attitude.

''It won't affect how I race on the track. I want to go out and win, I race everyone hard,'' he said.

Patrick rocketed to worldwide prominence when she challenged for the Indy 500 win as a rookie, becoming the first woman to lead laps while finishing fourth in 2005. She finished a career-best third in 2009. She began dabbling in NASCAR in 2010 in the Nationwide Series, and moved full-time last year leaving IndyCar and the 500 behind.

Patrick has struggled in stock cars, notching just seven top-10s in 58 Nationwide races since 2010. Still, she was voted by fans the series' most popular driver last year.

In the Sprint Cup Series, where she'll drive this season for Stewart-Haas Racing, team co-owner Tony Stewart handpicked 10 of the hardest tracks for Patrick last season to force her to learn on the fly in preparation for this year. Her average finish in the 10 races was 28th and her best finish was 17th in her season finale at Phoenix.

Stenhouse has won eight races over the last two seasons to become the first driver since Martin Truex Jr. in 2004-05 to win consecutive Nationwide titles. He was promoted this year by Roush Fenway to the Cup Series to replace 2003 NASCAR champion Matt Kenseth.

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Fri Jan 25, 2013 9:58 pm

Well this surprised the heck out of me but I think it's nice to have someone in your life. The two are definitely confirming their relationship now. Mmmmmm.

Glad to see you're back in the forums Smokie! It wasn't the same without you here!

Can't wait until February!! I hate this off season.

Re: Danica & Ricky ?

Sat Jan 26, 2013 1:38 am

I respect the fact that they waited until the media tour was over.

I like the "Stenica" doc... I'd say it "rolls off the tongue nicely", but that seems rather personal... :lol: :lol: :lol:
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