Dave Calabro takes final lap down memory lane with Danica Patrick

Danica's Final Ride
Dave Calabro takes 110 mph ride with Danica Patrick
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SPEEDWAY, Ind. (WTHR) - As Danica Patrick takes one final trip around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, she reflected on her career with Eyewitness News sports director Dave Calabro.

They took a drive around the famed oval in a Chevrolet Camaro pace car at speeds of up to 110 miles per hour earlier this month.

"I should be going faster, but I'm trying to give us more time on track," she laughed.

The pair chatted about Danica's final Indianapolis 500, an event for which she has always been a huge fan.

“Everything. I mean, it all started here,” said Patrick. “I know that the only reason why I’m able to do all of the other things that I’m doing now and why I have all the luxuries I have and the relationships that I have and things like that are just because of the Indy 500. I say that one of the reasons why I feel like I have been an athlete that someone followed is because on big days, I did well. I mean, everyone was anticipating that Indy 500 that first year, and sure enough, I almost won the damn thing.”


During that 2005 race, Patrick became the first woman to lead a lap at the Indianpolis 500 and was up front late in the race.

"I remember coming down the back straightaway before the short chute on the restart and saying, 'All right guys, everybody say a prayer,' and (my engineer) said, 'We've been saying them all day'," she recalled. "And I got a good start and I...you know, took the lead back over and drove away for a little bit."

Danica would finish fourth in that first Indianapolis 500, the best finish by a female driver in the race.

As she heads into her final race, Patrick admits she's thought about kissing the bricks at IMS.

"Can you imagine? Just mic drop on a storybook ending. I keep picturing it," she said.

Patrick will have support at Sunday's race from her boyfriend, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

"He thinks it's really cool. Not only is he an athlete, but he's a sports fan. So for him to be able to go to the Daytona 500 and the Indy 500 and experience it on the inside and also just those races period, it's cool. He's excited," she said.

So are wedding bells in Danica's future?

"I love love, so of course," she said.

Patrick made a visit Tuesday at "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon," where she said she shared a secret she's "been keeping in for awhile."

After the checkered flag drops on her career, Danica said she'll definitely return to IMS as a spectator.

"This place will always be special to me. It always is. I mean, it's...you get a lump in your throat just thinking about the magnitude," she said. "I'll be back."

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