Bernie wants Danica, she wants no part

This may be the first story that includes Bernie Ecclestone and Danica Patrick that didn’t blow up the Internet.

A few days ago, to the official F1 site, Bernie Ecclestone suggested his interest in having Danica Patrick, former IndyCar and current Nascar driver (oh, and she’s a she), in Formula 1.

There doesn’t seem to have been much crazy follow-up. Well, until some intrepid reporters on this side of the Pond got a hold of Danica on Friday:

Danica Patrick has no desire to drive in Formula One even though the chief of the organization says he would like to lure her to the sport.

Bernie Ecclestone expressed his interest in getting Patrick to F1 on Wednesday. Patrick, in her first full season in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series, was flattered but not interested.

“I did see something about Bernie’s comments,” Patrick said on Friday at Bristol Motor Speedway. “They sounded complimentary, and it looked like he was kind of acknowledging my ability to drive a car.

“I always said unless it would be something I would want to do for real, as in race a Formula One car, I don’t see any point in testing it. It’s a lot of work to get fitted in a car comfortable enough to be able to go drive it.”

Really, a lot of work? Harder than shooting a Go Daddy commercial?

Anyway, I think the F1 site thought they’d get a Danica bump — their Q&A with Bernie led with this:

Q: Bernie, Formula One racing is heading into a new season and once again it’s only guys on the grid. Will we see a female driver within the next couple of years, given the success – and stardom – that Danica Patrick has in the United States?
Bernie Ecclestone:
 There should be no reason why not, providing that we find a team to take her. Danica would be good to have with one of the teams now. All the things that people worry about – whether a woman can cope with the G-forces and all that – she has proven that she can. She’s been there and done it. What I think – and I cannot blame her for it – is that she will hardly want to give up the exposure she has in the US to come here and maybe not make it.

Q: Aged 30, Danica is now unlikely to try to make a switch to unknown F1 territory F1. But what do you think: how long will it take to find somebody like her – a woman capable of making the step into F1 racing?
 I have been looking for a woman for years! I always thought that this could be a good idea.

I know what you’re thinking: Bernie always thought it was a good idea? Even back during the “appliances” years? Well, the ESPN story didn’t forget it:

In 2005, Ecclestone made headlines regarding his not-so-complimentary remarks about Patrick’s fourth-place finish in the Indianapolis 500.

“You know, I’ve got one of these wonderful ideas that women should be all dressed in white like all the other domestic appliances,” he said at the time.

Patrick laughed when asked whether Ecclestone’s attempt to get her to F1 ended any differences the two may have had. She reminded reporters that he’s also sent her complimentary messages after big moments in her career since 2005.

“I tell you what, I do love domestic appliances,” she said. “I love to cook, and I love to be in the kitchen. That’s flattering. Those utensils are very important in my life.”

It actually sounds like Danica may have what it takes to deal with Bernie. Perhaps a move to F1 wouldn’t be so rough, after all.

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