I like sports and the action that pertains to it.

I don't care about an athlete's personal life anymore than I do that of Kim Kardashian's (which makes sense when you consider that she basically only dates professional athletes).

I don't care where an athlete dines, parties, or in whose bed an athlete spends the night.  I personally don't think it's a good idea to bunk up with a competitor, but so long as it doesn't affect the sporting event I watch on Sundays, I really don't care what Danica Patrick, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., or the collective two of them do in their time away from competition.

I still support Tiger Woods as the greatest golfer to ever play the game, and I've disliked Alex Rodriguez since long before things went south with Madonna.  This weekend, I was impressed with Danica Patrick's ability to remind us that despite the clown show from the media that didn't relate the event they were there to cover, her focus remained on preparing and qualifying for the Daytona 500.

Here is a photo gallery of Danica Patrick's weekend as a driver, which is the only type of Danica my interest in auto racing cares about.

Thursday, February 14
On Valentine's Day, Danica Patrick had nothing but love for the questions
from the media, even if few of them are actually focused on her driving.  (Getty)

Sunday, February 17 - Qualifying
While most were talking about anything but her race car, Danica Patrick
laid down the fastest time on the board during qualifying. (Getty)

Sunday, February 17 - Qualifying
After a great qualifying lap, Danica Patrick does something
that wasn't newsworthy: she climbed out of her car. (Getty)

Sunday, February 17- Victory Lane
Danica Patrick celebrates with her crew chief, Tony Gibson, after becoming the
first female in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series history to qualify on the pole. (Getty)

Sunday, February 17 - Victory Lane
Danica Patrick and team owner Tony Stewart celebrate her Coors Light Pole Award. (Getty)

Sunday, February 17 - Victory Lane
Danica Patrick and Jeff Gordon pose together for a photo of
the front row starters in the upcoming Daytona 500. (Getty)


As you scrolled through these photos, you saw multiple male drivers that related to Danica's weekend.  The driver with whom she was grouped so often in a sentence didn't make any of them.  Why?  Because that driver had little relation to her on-track performance this weekend.

I don't know where Danica's Cup career will take her.  Despite a great qualifying run, I'm not yet ready to anoint her as a great driver.  Just like I will do with fellow rookie, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., I'll give her the opportunity to earn my respect for her as a driver as she progresses in the series.

I'm excited for both rookies, individually, as drivers, to start their full-time Sprint Cup Series careers this coming weekend at the Daytona 500.

Need I say more?