Danica-mania has hit Daytona 500 and NASCAR is taking huge advantage of Danica Patrick’s historic Daytona 500 pole win, according to a Feb. 18 ESPN report. There has reportedly been a “significant spike in interest” in the racing and the Sprint Cup race, in particular since Patrick earned the title as the first woman to win the race.
According to ESPN, Patrick’s win was touted everywhere from “Good Morning America” to “CBS This Morning,” and she is scheduled for another round of interviews today, Feb. 19 on national shows, including ESPN’s “Pardon the Interruption.”
NASCAR is reportedly taking full advantage of the new interest. “Just the sheer volume of media requests we've received … it's staggering to see the breadth of requests, from sports, non-sports, national media, smaller media,” said Steve Phelps, NASCAR's chief marketing officer. “It's pervasive and that obviously bodes well for pre-promotion of our racing.”
"The great thing is we're not just in sports conversations. We're in a much broader conversation going to places we normally are not."
Patrick’s win aids NASCAR’s efforts to target its younger fan base. “It's very important,” Phelps said. “We've got something we call an industry action plan we have in place. One of the key things is to grow new segments. You want to be diverse and get younger. She helps in both places.”
“We've had some great stories, we've had some incredible interest, but this is something I would say is unique and special as she continues to break ground in NASCAR,” Phelps said. “We're not trying to overexpose one driver versus another,” Phelps said. “I don't think she'd want us to. She wants to go out and prove she belongs here. [Sunday], she proved she does.”
Fans and soon-to-be fans will surely be inundated with “Danica-mania” for the rest of the event.
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