Danica Patrick knows exactly what it is like to make history as an Indy Car driver. And she was on hand for Sunday’s big race.
The 2021 Indianapolis 500 was one for the history books. More than 100,000 fans made their way to the esteemed racetrack in central Indiana. It was the biggest crowd for a sporting event since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the end, the result of the race was a historic one. Helio Castroneves took home the win, becoming the fourth driver in history to win the race four times. The Brazilian driver previously won the big race in 2001, 2002, and 2009. Now he joins A.J. Foyt, Al Unser Sr., and Rick Mears as the only four-time winners at the Indy 500.
Danica Patrick was thrilled for the 46-year-old Castroneves. She took to her official Instagram account to pay tribute to him following the epic performance.
“Yesterday was an above average day, and how many of those have we had in the last 14 months?” Patrick wrote on Instagram. “Sun was shining, people everywhere, smiling, I drove the pace car, Worked with amazing talent on the broadcast, great action on the track, and a truly wonderful human won his 4th Indy 500! And I got choked up. One of only 4 in history to do that! @heliocastroneves”
Meanwhile, Indy Car fans were loving Danica Patrick as part of the broadcast team.
“Truly awesome for you to be there and witness it as a friend and broadcaster. That was really neat,” one fan commented.
“It was great to see you on the broadcast,” another follower wrote. “Now if we could just see you in a race car again 😉”
Danica Patrick Named the Pace Car Driver at Indy 500
Even though Danica Patrick is no longer racing competitively, she did return to Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday.
The former Indy Car driver was named as the pace car driver for the 2021 Indy 500. The track organization announced the news in an Instagram post last week.
“From leading the race in 2005 to setting the pace in 2021. Please help us welcome @danicapatrick as the driver of the @teamchevy Corvette Stingray pace car for the 105th Running of the #Indy500 on May 30.”
Although she has never won the event herself, Danica Patrick does have a history at the Indy 500. She held the lead at three different points during the 2005 race. And in 2010, she finished in third place, the highest finish ever for a female driver.