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Danica Patrick Boosts Interest in Nascar, Seton Hall Poll Finds

March 03, 2013

Danica Patrick

Danica Patrick, driver of the #10 Chevrolet, gets into her car in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Fresh Fit 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on n Avondale, Arizona March 2, 2013. Photographer: Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Danica Patrick’s eighth-place finish in the Daytona 500 is a boost for Nascar, a poll by Seton Hall University said.

The survey found that 21 percent of respondents were more interested in Nascar’s marquee event because Patrick started in the pole position.

“Nascar can be very excited that one in five Americans were more interested, something any sport would love to have,” Rick Gentile, director of the poll, said in an e-mailed statement. “That’s really a huge boost to the sport from a single participant.”

Patrick, the first woman to start from the pole position for a race in Nascar’s top series, topped the best previous Daytona 500 finish for by a woman, by Janet Guthrie, who was 11th in 1980.

To contact the reporter on this story: Dex McLuskey in Dallas at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at

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