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Danica Patrick: ‘If I’m in a position to win, I feel perfectly ready’

Jul 26, 2014, 2:59 PM EDT

(Photo: Andy Lyons/Getty Images) Getty Images

INDIANAPOLIS – She readily admits the odds may be long, but Danica Patrick is not giving up on earning a win this season — and potentially making the Chase for the Sprint Cup.

“I think a win is going to be pretty tough, but I think a win is realistic,” Patrick said during a press conference Saturday morning at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. “I feel like I’m able to (win), I just don’t know if we’re there yet. But if it presents itself and I’m in a position to win, I feel perfectly ready.

“I’m just not sure as a group in whole, probably including myself – that’s not a scenario that we’re able to put ourselves in every single weekend –and even for the people that are, it’s still hard to win.”

To make the Chase, Patrick has to win one of the next seven races. She concedes she’s too far back in the points (27th) to enter the Chase solely on points and without a win.

“Outside of (a win) in a points situation, I don’t think there’s much hope there,” Patrick said. “It requires you to do that every weekend, finish right up front every single weekend to get those points.

“I think that if we’re able to be up there as far as running, then the win is probably much more likely, but that’s not where we’re at.”

Just past the mid-point of her second season as a full-time Cup driver, Patrick sees progress in her development. But there still remain struggles that are frustrating to her as well as her team and overall Stewart Haas Racing organization.

“I really think that just the experience in the car is helping me feel what’s happening more so,” Patrick said. “It leaves less options for the crew chief as changes when you can be more specific about what the car is doing, and then your progress on the weekend tends to be better.

“I also think that just getting up to speed quicker from the get-go also helps in not doing a big circle with the setup. Usually if you’re not driving hard enough at the beginning of practice when you first hit the track, you are loose. And then as soon as you get more confident and you’re driving in harder, all of a sudden you’re tight again, and what do you know, you’re right back where you started but you’re a session behind now.

“I have a lot to learn and a lot of progress to still make on being able to feel the little things about the car that I need to to help even more, but I think those two things are really helpful overall on our weekends and help us to be more methodical and fine-tune the car.”

While Patrick and her fans would obviously like to see more progress, she’s content for now. But if she somehow steals a win in the next seven races and makes the Chase, it’ll be a whole different ballgame from here on out for Patrick.

“We are getting stronger as a team,” Patrick said. “There’s no doubt about that, and we’re getting better and better, and the team is doing a great job of producing better cars all the time and keeping up and moving forward. All that stuff is going in the right direction, but I’m still only at a year and a half’s experience in Cup.”

Even so, Patrick hopes for a good day Sunday. Anything over and above will be a bonus.

“I think it’ll be okay overall, but you’re hoping for great because it’s a tough place to pass and it’s Indy, and you want to do really well,” she said.

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

  1. eugenesaxe1 - Jul 26, 2014 at 5:09 PM

    ‘If I’m in a position to win, I feel perfectly ready’

    Yeah, so would anybody else, you airhead.

  2. scott386 - Jul 26, 2014 at 5:49 PM

    Only if every other car crashed or broke down….She’s a idiot…..

    • robert194811 - Jul 27, 2014 at 11:16 AM

      no,you are,what do you do for a living

  3. worknman24hours - Jul 26, 2014 at 10:20 PM

    Good race car driver,simply not a good fit for NASCAR but I think that EVERYONE in Indycar is extra happy she is’nt there anymore.

    At least the other Indycar drivers get some real tv time now.

    Good luck Danica,I hope you make the chase.

  4. jollyjoker2 - Jul 26, 2014 at 11:11 PM

    Gal needs friends on the race course to win…Well, maybe she should try stripping and they will tip her with a easy pass. I don’t see her winning being a beeeettcccccccccchhhhhhhh

  5. techmeister1 - Jul 26, 2014 at 11:28 PM

    What a bunch of ASS CLOWNS here.

    If you could pull your heads outta your asses for five minutes you actually realize that she knows exactly what she is talking about and is getting better at driving a stock car. As she says she’s had about a season and a half in CUP yet the haters think she has no skill despite achieving more than any other woman in history in CRASHCAR. Qualifying #1 for the Daytona 500 two years in a row, once in NNS and once in CUP, leading laps in the Daytona 500, finishing 8th, leading laps at Talladega etc. is a lot more than many other competitors have achieved in CRASHCAR with far more years of experience.than she has.

    Hating and being an ASS CLOWN is not going to diminish her achievements or determination. It just shows how ignorant some folks can be when blinded by hate.

    • robert194811 - Jul 27, 2014 at 11:19 AM

      well said tech,most of these ass holes who bitch about her probably beat there wifes……there nothing but a bunch of ass wipes

      • scott386 - Jul 28, 2014 at 3:10 PM

        Well said…LMAO.. Typical Danica fan nonsense…All they have are insults and no facts….

    • ajah24 - Jul 27, 2014 at 5:49 PM

      Let’s see Kyle Larson has more wins in Nationwide then she has in her entire 16 years of professional racing and has more top 5’s in Cup then she does but has been racing less time. Tony Stewart in his rookie year, had 3 wins and finished 4th in the points. Jimmie Johnson had 3 wins and finished 5th in the points in his rookie year. Last year she finished 27th in the points and this year she is 28th. She is ahead of 8 drivers who drove all races and all those drivers have 1/16th the budget and resources she has. They are grossly underfunded.

      Is she the worse driver out there? Nope but she was mediocre last year and this year she is mediocre. She is a marketing tool and all hype not much else.

      • scott386 - Jul 28, 2014 at 3:12 PM

        She is the worst driver in top tier equipment….I’d love to see what Larson or Dillon could do in her car……

  6. robert194811 - Jul 27, 2014 at 11:20 AM

    she drives better than most of the others……..

  7. gatorguru - Jul 27, 2014 at 3:06 PM

    She’s awful. Check the results assclown..

  8. sportfan2 - Jul 27, 2014 at 5:07 PM

    “But if it presents itself and I’m in a position to win”, She has good cars, what exactly does that mean? I guess every driver in any race could say that.

    If she does not start winning or at least “in a position to win” she will get dumped from this team. As far as “presenting itself” you have to MAKE that happen. :)

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