Danica wants to kick my ass

Posted by Iannucci | 3/04/2009 | 18 comments »
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I know I take issue with Mrs Hospenthal on occasion, but really, I swear, I don't hate the woman. Nothing could be further from the truth. I don't have any "Danica" merchandise on me (although my oldest daughter does), but despite my concern with certain choices she makes I'm no less a fan of hers than any other driver.

Really. I mean it. Stop laughing.

Hey, if I didn't have a soft spot in my heart for her would I have read the entire My-husband-Paul-is-sooooo-schmoopy tome that is "Crossing the Line"? Would I have written about how ridiculously unfair the comparison to Anna Kournikova was? Would I have shamelessly planted my kids outside of a restroom just to get her autograph?

Of course not - Danica and I are cool. At least, that's what I thought. But now I find out she wants to kick my ass, and even worse, she wants to kick yours as well. Gird your hindquarters accordingly.

I sincerely look forward to the exceptionally civil discourse regarding this promo that will be conducted in the "comments" of this post.

UPDATE: For a chuckle or two, be sure to check out the Danica roasting at pressdog and Diecast Dude. Or, to put it another way, feel free to momentarily expand the Great Danica Flame Wars of '09 to a different battlefield.


  1. Anonymous // March 04, 2009 4:51 PM  

    FIRE IN THE HOLE!!!!!!

    [flees comments section rapidly]

  2. Anonymous // March 04, 2009 5:02 PM  

    The only way to create a more heated debate in auto racing circles than mentioning Mrs. Hospenthal in a blog post is mentioning Digger.

    Which gives me an idea...

    /starts putting together next post

  3. Schrementi // March 04, 2009 7:20 PM  

    Seriously, is all let's left in marketing tank? She puts fans in the seats (sometimes) but it's spotty and hollow success. I would love to see her succeed, but as a diehard, I am growing weary of this crap...

  4. Anonymous // March 04, 2009 7:30 PM  

    Come on Dan... its PR. Promoting the sport is not unique to motorsport. NFL, NBA, MLB, & NHL all self promote & inform what channel they'll be on.

    ESPN & CNN do it to promote their on-air talent...

    Danica does it, but so did Helio & Penske with DwTS press. Dan Wheldon shuns the camera? Seriously, at least the IRL doesn't have its version of Digger & endless cheeseball IRL specific ads.

  5. Anonymous // March 04, 2009 8:04 PM  

    Talk is cheap. She talks the talk - hasn't walked the walk yet. When she does that, I'll consider taking her seriously. At least now I know which Versus IRL pre-season show not to watch.

    Maybe if she didn't do cheesecake more people would take her seriously as a racer. The first one, okay, she was young. Tacky, but she got a pass. But the second, and then the third....

  6. Anonymous // March 04, 2009 8:13 PM  

    I wonder if Sarah has a tramp stamp.

  7. Anonymous // March 04, 2009 8:27 PM  

    SarahFan: She did the first SI photo shoot a YEAR ago & it was so popular the magazine ASKED her back & promoted it on the top cover.

    Don't hate the player... hate the game!!! :) :)

    I do side with you a bit on this one though. Danica's European training, her competing in deep fields in US based training ground series' , & her success as a woman in a man's sport is cheapened by her side job (JMO).

    I don't see Helio doing underwear ads... or Ryan Hunter Reay doing IZOD swim suit shoots. Danica has to do cheese cake to make her sponsors happy?

    All her hard work on the track to be just "one of the boys..." is halted when she becomes just another "one of the grid girls" off the race track

  8. Anonymous // March 04, 2009 10:18 PM  

    Sorry, but considering a 1/2 inch (max) picture on the cover in the upper right corner as a prime spot in that magazine, no, I don't think that's a positive promotional value for the IRL. People on all types of forums are stating that this is such a positive. No, I don't think so. IMHO. If the average SI purchaser saw that, it meant nothing as far as the IRL is concerned. It means something only to Mrs. Hospenthal's fans.

    If she was so popular a model, and boosted the SI sales so much last year, then why are the sales of that issue for this year so far below last year? Don't have the link, but I think it was on ESPN (don't crucify me if I got the source wrong, okay?).

    I'm just tired of the Danica hype. As one very wise racer once told me - all show, no go. She can be fast, when it's an oval and her car is 110%, but when it comes to sucking it up and pushing it when the circumstances aren't 100%, the car isn't 100%, and she needs to drive around all of that, no she hasn't shown me she has what it takes. Just to me, mind you.

  9. Anonymous // March 04, 2009 10:59 PM  

    No, not just to you, SarahFan...to all of us who've watched and waited for some delivery on all the 'promise'. Robin Miller says she'll be gone next year. What a paradox, the person I'd likely miss the least may leave - yet there's a hesitancy in my 'who cares' about it because of the potential loss of league attention. Then again, I'm not one who thinks all publicity is good publicity.

  10. pressdog // March 05, 2009 4:48 AM  

    Oh yeah, Danica has had it sooooooo hard, especially in the IRL. They hardly pay any attention to her and certainly haven't aided her in becoming a multi-millionaire. It has to be incredibly difficult to be fawned over and treated like a princess. I admire how she's held up under those grueling conditions.

  11. Carrie // March 05, 2009 1:50 PM  

    When is this twit going to realize she can't have it both ways? She and her defenders get all pissy when someone without an inflated opinion of her dares to mention she's a girl. Meanwhile, it's okay for her to her wave her little tatas around whenever a magazine puts in the call?

  12. Schrementi // March 05, 2009 6:52 PM  

    I just want to make my point clear. I said "she puts asses in the seat" that is good. My gripe with this promo is not against Danica - the better she does, the more attention this sport will get. My gripe is that I am growing tired of hollow campaigns. Here's the deal, if this sport is going to find it's niche market and hold 'em it needs more than "Danica Mania" "Romanticizing History" "Dancing with the Stars" "NASCAR Idology" or any other gimmicks.

    Manufacturer involvement might be trick. I am starting to believe that Grand Am and ALMS have more of a clear-cut market position and "soul" rather than the IRL.

    How Danica kicking my ass got me on this tangent I am unsure!

    - Dan

  13. Anonymous // March 05, 2009 9:30 PM  

    SarahFan: Try sighting some actual numbers/ sources for the sales slide (link?) I will offer one opinion IF sales have slipped off... the INTERNET!!! Print magazines, along with newspapers are not exactly rockin' strong these days.

    I never suggested Danica's top cover of this year's SI promoted the IRL... I offered it up as an explanation of her part time modeling career & WHY she keeps doing it. I also stated that as a fan ... I had ISSUES with it.

    As for her not "walking the walk..." She has out performed your girl Sarah by a country mile. As a woman driver she raised the bar (just as Sarah & Lyn St. James did previously). Future women drivers might be even better than Danica.

  14. Anonymous // March 05, 2009 9:50 PM  

    Pressdog: I'm sorry but I think accountants for Scott Dixon, Dario, Tony Kanaan, Dan Wheldon & plenty of other OW/ IRL drivers will attest that the IRL has helped make them quite rich too.

    The IRS sure thinks Helio has enjoyed his IRL backed PR & $$$. They usually don't go after underpaid race car drivers!!! :) :)

  15. Anonymous // March 06, 2009 8:41 PM  

    AZZ045, as I said in my comment, I didn't have the link. It was a regular news source, and if I'd thought I'd need it for a blog a couple weeks later, trust me, I would have saved it somehow.

    I never compared Danica with Sarah in my post. I've always been a Sarah fan because I admire her, for a multitude of reasons. Period. Just because I'm a Sarah fan, I'm automatically critical of Danica? That's not how I think. I can, in fact, be a fan of more than one driver. And, in fact, am. What I was trying to say, which apparently wasn't clear enough, is that with all the Danica hype (media AND from her own mouth), she hasn't performed. She talks the talk, doesn't walk the walk. Always has an excuse if things don't go her way, and it's always someone else's fault when she doesn't perform. As far as the promo for the show tomorrow night - I have to totally agree with Pressdog's comments. She has been so belittled and deprived by the IRL and the other drivers it is just sinful - sarcasm alert.

    My fondest wish, which I know won't happen, is to watch an IRL race and actually see the race and the competition, rather than have a 2+ hour commentary on where Danica is on any given lap. The printing on our mute button on the remote has actually been obliterated because of its use during the IRL races over the past few years.

  16. Indychic317 // March 07, 2009 6:00 PM  
    This comment has been removed by the author.
  17. Anonymous // March 08, 2009 10:13 AM  

    Sarahfan: All I was countering was YOUR question of WHY Danica keeps her side gig (modeling). Despite your claims that the magazine has watched it sales drop, other factors don't support your claims

    Traditional media (print mags like SI) have watched their numbers slide nothing but DOWN. Publishers are going to grab anything that stops the bleeding. Most reading this blog are diehard race fans. The rest of the public have voted they like Danica & want to see her highlighted. SI would not risk bringing back a failed concept...

    You say you are not critical of Danica , yet you offer NOTHING positive of her in all of your posts! We kind of agree on her side job (swimsuit model) distracting from her day job (race driver). But here have been the theme of your posts:
    (1) Her modeling doesn't promote the IRL
    (2) She doesn't "walk the walk"...
    (3) Your mute button is worn out
    (4) She is full of excuses+ always blames others
    (5) You are sick of the Danica-Hype

    I'll quickly counter:
    Since you mentioned an unlinked ESPN report, I will use unlinked stuff too. Danica ranks very high on popular women athlete "lists" or polls. The public knows who she is & that her job is racing.

    You say Danica is overhyped & does not "walk the walk". She has not delivered. These arguments could apply to another woman driver, who could that be? Sarah Fisher was voted the IRL's Most Popular driver a couple years in a row. She had ONE pole (Kentucky?) & no one would step up to sponsor her efforts.

    Your mute is worn out from her HYPE, but what about all the HYPE for a fellow AGR teammate? Do you smash the mute for the Marco Andretti HYPE? What has Mario's grandson done to deserve his press?? Danica has more poles & the same number of wins in basically the same equipment as Marco... but she's a "princess". When do we start calling Marco the "Prince"???

    I'm fans of numerous IRL drivers, but I don't like to see some pissed on & some to be given umbrellas. Danica brought the mainstream media BACK to the IRL. Got people talking about ALL the great drivers this series has... so I can deal with some overhype from time to time.

  18. Anonymous // March 11, 2009 8:37 AM  

    I think it's kinda cool. Is that bad?