Danica Patrick won’t return to Stewart-Haas Racing in 2018
Danica Patrick is done at Stewart-Haas Racing.
Patrick posted a statement on her Facebook page Tuesday saying her time with Stewart-Haas “had come to an end” due to a new sponsorship arrangement for the team next season.
Her future in NASCAR’s top Cup series next season is now an open question. Patrick says she remains focused on the rest of the season.
The statement came shortly after Smithfield Foods said it will leave Richard Petty Motorsports to become a primary sponsor at Stewart-Haas next year. The news is a blow to RPM, but it also forced changes at Stewart-Haas, which has struggled with sponsorship for three of its four cars, including the No. 10 driven by Patrick.
“It has been my honor to drive for Tony Stewart, Gene Haas and everyone at Stewart-Haas Racing for the past six seasons. Together we earned a Daytona 500 pole, seven top-10 finishes and we also had some exciting racing along the way,” Patrick said. “My time driving for them, however, has come to an end due to a new sponsorship arrangement in 2018. Sponsorship plays a vital role in our sport, and I have been very fortunate over the course of my career, but this year threw us for a curve. Our amazing partners, such as Aspen Dental and Code 3, stepped up in a big way on short notice this year and I am incredibly grateful.
I wish SHR the best of luck with their new sponsorship and driver. Thanks for the memories. Right now, my focus is on the remainder of the 2017 season and finishing the year strong. I have the utmost faith in myself and those around me, and feel confident about my future.”
Patrick did not say whether she will race for another team or if she will retire from competition.