Bobby Rahal continues to beat the we-don’t-miss-Danica drum in the media as seen in a piece by Terry Jones in the Edmonton Sun as her former employer followed up on the comments he made at Indianapolis in May.
“She was good for the series and the series was good for her, but I don’t know if anybody is missing her at all. She was a media darling but the story got old,” Rahal told the Sun. “The Indianapolis 500 this year was one of the best ever and she wasn’t even there. The focus is back where it should be, on the race itself — on the race and the quality of competition.”
She got publicity for being a solid driver, a driver who drove within her limits and mostly mistake-free. But not for winning. It’s good to be back where the focus is actually on the people who are winning and that’s how it should be.
Rahal famously gave the diminutive Patrick her start in big-time open-wheel racing, giving her the tools and the team that created Danicamania in 2005. Patrick defected to Andretti Autosport in 2007, triggering a slide that saw Rahal’s team go from a three-car operation in 2006 to two in ’07, one in ’08 and then none until Takuma Sato came aboard in 2012.
But Rahal is not the only person that feels that the IZOD Indy Car Series is better off without Patrick. Two-time Edmonton winner Will Power feels that the media is focusing on what is important in the series – albeit sometimes to his detriment.
“Danica got a lot of publicity, and she deserved the publicity from the point of view that she’s been the best female driver to come around. And that part sure didn’t bother me. I’d love it if I never had to do any media.” said Power. “She got publicity for being a solid driver, a driver who drove within her limits and mostly mistake-free. But not for winning. It’s good to be back where the focus is actually on the people who are winning and that’s how it should be.”
Fellow two-time Edmonton race winner Sebastian Bourdais only raced against Patrick once before joining the series a year ago said that he expected some sort of difference when she left – but that there hasn’t been a tangible effect.
“Despite her going away to race somewhere else, it hasn’t taken anything away and now the attention is definitely on the density and quality of the field that the series is enjoying this year.” Bourdais said.