Danica Patrick confirmed for another GoDaddy Super Bowl ad, which should feature a surprise guest


Danica Patrick will be in another GoDaddy ad for this year’s Super Bowl, to the surprise of almost no one. The ad will be her 14th Super Bowl ad in a nine-year period.

The star of the GoDaddy ad though, isn’t expected to be Patrick – it’s a yet-to-be-cast puppy.

We’re already bracing for the inevitable social media meltdown that will follow as a result.

Patrick announced the news this morning via her Twitter page, and more information was also released in a USA Today article.

“People love puppies,” Barb Rechterman, GoDaddy’s chief marketing officer, told USA Today. “But our ad will have a surprise ending that’s not traditionally warm and fuzzy.”

Puppies and Patrick signal a change of course for the company, which had long gone for the overtly sexy type ads in the past.

But the Scottsdale, Ariz.-based company has sought to change its image over the last couple years; Patrick appeared last year in a “bulked-up” body suit that was certainly off the beaten path.

Other ads she’s done in recent years featured computer/IT professionals, as GoDaddy sought to be more a behind-the-scenes company, and also one alongside then-GoDaddy Racing teammate James Hinchcliffe, when Hinchcliffe still drove a GoDaddy-sponsored IndyCar from 2012 to 2013.

Patrick only finished 28th in this year’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings – a one-spot drop from her rookie year in 2013 – but consistently ran better, scored more top-10 finishes, and posted a better average starting and finishing position than she did her first go-around.

Of course, this ad means we’ll see Patrick once again before she hits the track for the kickoff to the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.

This year’s Super Bowl XLIX in Glendale, Ariz. – not far from GoDaddy’s base – will air on NBC on February 1.

In other Patrick news, her 2015 paint scheme, revealed last week, has now emerged in actual form as opposed to a rendering.

Toyota No. 8 car wins the 24 Hours of Le Mans for third consecutive year

24 Hours of Le Mans

LE MANS, France — Toyota Gazoo’s No. 8 car comfortably won the 24 Hours of Le Mans by five laps Sunday to secure a third straight victory in the prestigious endurance race.

It was also a third consecutive win for Swiss driver Sebastien Buemi and Japan’s Kazuki Nakajima driving. Brendon Hartley was the other driver, having replaced two-time Formula One champion Fernando Alonso.

Buemi and Hartley sat on the side of the car as Nakajima drove toward the podium. Hartley won for a second time after tasting success with the Porsche LMP Team in 2017 before an unhappy season in Formula One.

The Swiss team’s Rebellion No. 1 featured American driver Gustavo Menezes and Brazilian Bruno Senna – the nephew of late F1 great Ayrton Senna.

It finished one lap ahead of Toyota Gazoo’s No. 7, with Rebellion’s No. 3 finishing in fourth place.

For much of the race it looked like Toyota’s No. 7 would win after leading comfortably from pole position. But late into the night the car encountered an engine problem and the 30-minute stop in the stands proved costly.

The race was first held in 1923. A total of 252,500 spectators attended in 2019, but there were none this year when the race started three months late because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

“We miss the fans,” New Zealander Hartley said. “I look forward to seeing all the fans again.”

In other divisions:

United Autosports won the LMP2 division with the entry of Filipe Albuquerque, Paul Di Resta and Phil Hanson.

–In LMGTE Pro, the victory was claimed by Aston Martin Vantage AMR of Maxime Martin, Alex Lynn and Harry Tincknell (who drives for Mazda in the DPi division of IMSA).

–TF Sport won the LMGTE Am class.

The Toyota No. 7 took pole after former F1 driver Kamui Kobayashi narrowly edged out the Rebellion No. 1 team in qualifying.

In damp and humid conditions Mike Conway got away cleanly from the start, while Senna held off Buemi.

After nearly seven hours, Toyota’s No. 8 fell back after a 10-minute stop in the stands to fix a brake-cooling problem on Kazuki Nakajima’s car. Rebellion’s No. 1, driven by Frenchman Norman Nato, took advantage to move into second place behind Toyota’s No. 7.

Then came the decisive moment at 2:40 a.m. as the No. 7 – also featuring Argentine Jose Maria Lopez – encountered a turbo problem. When the car came back out it was back in fourth.

“We had a few problems early in the race,” Nakajima said. “Later they had a bigger issue than us.”

Rebellion’s No. 1 encountered a problem on the hood at around 9 a.m. and the change took six minutes, allowing the Rebellion No. 3 (Nathanael Berthon-Louis Deletraz-Romain Dumas) to close the gap.

It was becoming a tight battle between the two Rebellion cars behind Toyota’s No. 8.

At 12 p.m. Rebellion No. 3 with Dumas behind the wheel was only one second ahead of No. 1 driven by Menezes. Then both cars came in for a driver change with Deletraz swapping for Dumas on a lengthy stop, and Nato for Menezes as Rebellion No. 1 suddenly moved ahead of its team rival.

Dumas, a winner in 2016 with Porsche, appeared unhappy at the strategy decision to bring his car in first and the length of the stop. There were tense explanations in the team garage.

Colombian Tatiana Calderon, an F1 test driver with Alfa Romeo, was in the Richard Mille Racing Team in the LMP2 category. She was joined by German Sophia Florsch – an F3 driver – and Dutchwoman Beitske Visser. They placed ninth out of 24 in their category.