Danica Patrick in Spotlight at Daytona

All eyes on Danica as we head to the Daytona 500.

Danica Patrick smiles as she talks to the media following her sixth-place finish at the ARCA race this past weekend in Daytona Beach. Patrick, who is crossing over from the IndyCar series this year, feels she raced well enough in ARCA to now try a Nationwide Series race this weekend.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- The buildup for Danica Patrick's
first Daytona 500 began in earnest at Thursday's annual media day,
where auto racing's sweetheart was saddled with a full schedule of

Patrick was shuffled from interview to interview, answering
questions and shooting promotions for her first full season in
NASCAR. She couldn't even find solitude in the bathroom: an
autograph seeker followed Patrick inside and patiently waited for
the driver's signature.

Patrick will make her Sprint Cup Series debut in the Feb. 26
season-opening Daytona 500. It's the first of 10 races this year at
NASCAR's top level, and she's racing for the championship in the
second-tier Nationwide Series.

She says she has learned how to deal with the intense spotlight
while racing in the Indianapolis 500 the last seven years.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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