Danica Patrick after winning the pole
position at the Daytona 500 earlier this year.
The newest Tissot PRC 200 Danica
Patrick Limited Edition T-Race 2013
chronograph watch ($550) houses a
Swiss-made quartz movement and features
her engraved logo on its steel caseback.
The dial features Patrick’s number 7 in
Super-Luminova. Just 4,999 pieces will be
made. Razny Jewelers, 1700 Green Bay Road,
Highland Park, 847-432-5300
Danica Patrick helped
design her Tissot watch to
be worn for all occasions.
Considered the most successful woman in the history of American auto racing, Danica Patrick has compiled some impressive accomplishments: She is the first woman Nascar driver to win a pole position for the Daytona 500, she is the first woman to ever win a pole in the Sprint Cup, and she has the highest finish for a woman at the Indianapolis 500. Now, the Illinois native and part-time Chicago resident is making a tour that will encompass the Windy City and the surrounding region: the Brickyard 400 in July at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Pure Michigan 400 in August at the Michigan International Speedway, and the Geico 400 Sprint Cup in September at Chicagoland Speedway.
Behind the wheel of the #10 Go Daddy Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Haas Racing (she also drives #7 depending on the race) in this season’s Sprint Cup Series, Patrick also has a limited Nationwide Series schedule for Turner Motorsports. Born in 1982 in Beloit, Wisconsin, and raised in Roscoe, Illinois, 31-year-old Patrick (who is also a successful fashion model) has spent a great deal of time in Chicago and is enthusiastic about returning.
“I really enjoy racing at Chicagoland Speedway,” says Patrick. “I consider it a home track since I grew up in Roscoe. I’ve run well in the Nationwide Series car in the past, and I ran the Sprint Cup race there last year, so I’m hoping that experience will help when we go back in September. You can definitely hustle the car around Chicago, but it’s a slippery track. We’re working on improving our package for the 1.5-mile tracks, so hopefully we’ll have it dialed in before we go there. I’m hoping for even better results, since it’s one of the tracks where I have more experience.”
Patrick says that her life in auto racing has made her ever more aware of time. “My life is all about the stopwatch,” attests Patrick. “And it’s not just about the seconds, but about the tenth of a second and the 100th of a second. Time is central for me.” For Patrick, who says she wanted to drive since she was little and started at age 10, the sport runs in the family: Her father was a racer and met her mother during a blind date at a race. “Racing is literally in my blood thanks to the two of them.”
Initially Patrick considered studying engineering so she could work on cars, but when she went to England at the age of 16 to race, she realized she didn’t need to be a mechanic as well as a driver. “I learned that there are people who work on your car for you, and your job is to drive,” she says. “It’s a full-time job, and it’s not just turning the wheel—it’s taking care of the other responsibilities associated with being a driver,” as in fulfilling sponsor, media, and other obligations.
In her role as ambassador for Tissot, Patrick was active in creating the watch to make it versatile. “I want my fans to be able to wear the watch in their everyday lives, not just in a sporty way,” says Patrick, who has collaborated closely with Tissot in designing each of the two watches that bear her name: the PRC 100 Danica Patrick Limited Edition, which features 12 diamonds as markers, and the PRC 200, which showcases the number 7 in Super-Luminova properties to commemorate Tissot’s sponsorship of Patrick’s #7 Motorsports Chevrolet in 2010.
Speaking of her connection to the Midwest, Patrick declares, “Chicago is my favorite city. Some of my favorite restaurants are here, like GT Fish & Oyster. And I’m a loyal Bears fan through good games and bad games, but of course I prefer the good.”