Danica Patrick is finalizing a deal to run full time in the Nationwide Series and select Sprint Cup events in 2012, according to the Associated Press. Patrick, who currently races in the IZOD IndyCar Series, would run full time in Nationwide for JR Motorsports, her current team, which is owned by Dale Earnhardt Jr. Patrick would drive for Stewart Haas Racing in the Sprint Cup, under the rumored deal. SHR is co-owned by Tony Stewart.
At Indianapolis Motor Speedway last weekend, Earnhardt Jr said:
I feel confident that she’s content where she is and happy with what we’re doing. I think things are looking positive for us to put something together. … I would like for her to run full-time and I’m sure she is considering that, and I think she would enjoy it.
Patrick has driven 19 Nationwide races for JRM, finishing 15 of them. Her best finish came at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, where she finished fourth in the Sam’s Town 300. She is slated to drive six more races for JRM later this year.
At this point, it is unclear whether JRM would field three cars in the series or if Josh Wise would be released. Currently they split seat time in the No. 7 Chevy. Also unclear is whether or not Patrick’s deal will be structured in a way that allows her to race in the Indianapolis 500.