If Danica Patrick was stung by Richard Petty’s comment that she could win in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series “only if everybody else stayed home,” she’s keeping it to herself.
“As I said the last time somebody said something that was not so positive for me, it spawns so many positive articles,” Patrick said on Daytona 500 media day at Daytona International Speedway (via ESPN). “I love the conversation that it creates in sport, and across the board it makes sports interesting. It makes life interesting when people have different perspectives, and that’s fine with me.”
“I like that people have opinions. That is fine with me. It creates such conversation and as I said the last time somebody said something that was not so positive for me, it spawned so many positive articles. And, so, there’s a positive side to it, too. But more than anything, I love the conversation that it creates in sports and across the board, it makes sports interesting. It makes life interesting when people have different perspectives. And that’s fine with me.”
In an ESPN interview, Patrick said she had no plans to try to talk to Petty the next time she has the opportunity to do so.
“I won’t seek him out for any reason,” she said. “Never have in any situations in the past where somebody has said something about me.”
Win or lose, she says she knows her mere presence is an inspiration to some. “The people that matter the most to me are my team, my sponsors and those little 3-year-old kids that run up to you and want a great big hug and say they want to grow up to be like you. That’s the stuff I really focus on.”