Danica Patrick talks escape from Peru, life under lockdown

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The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has changed everyone’s lives.

With virtually the entire world on lockdown, few if anyone is unaffected by the new changes in daily life in some form.

Danica Patrick and her boyfriend Aaron Rodgers were on vacation in Peru when the pandemic began to spread, and the two of them quickly made their escape home.

“We kind of got word at the very last minute that we had to leave 9:30 in the morning because Peru was shutting its borders down by 10 a.m.,” Patrick told Mike Tirico on Lunch Talk Live Thursday afternoon. “We found this out at midnight the night before.

“When we got there (at the airport), it was just crazy. There were people everywhere and it kind of reminded me of standing on the grid before any race.

Fortunately, both were able to make it home safely, but like others, Patrick has found a lot more free time on her hands as the world began to lockdown.

In the meantime, she’s been sharing her morning workouts on Instagram Live.

“I’ve also realized that you’re going to have the understanding of yourself and the people around you as to whether or not you’re an introvert or an extrovert,” Patrick said. “Either you’ve settled into this and you kind of like it, or you’re getting a little bit uncomfortable with the lack of people and hugs and touch and communication. You know that about yourself then. I guess it wasn’t until this time that I really realized just how much of an introvert I am.

“I like being home, I like taking care of people, I like playing house, I like making meals, I like working out from home. I am a self-starter, so I can work out by myself. While I’d love a change of scenery and I love traveling, I do love being home.”

While it may come to a surprise to some that a public figure like Patrick would enjoy so much time to herself, Patrick said that it was a discovery she made late in her racing career.

“I realized probably 5-6 years ago how much I really needed alone time. I learned that when I lived in North Carolina,” Patrick said. “I would take the dogs for long walks in the woods and do my yoga practices by my self. Once there was a gym built on the property, I started working out by myself, and I realized I really don’t need people.”

IndyCar teams with NASCAR on IMS road course doubleheader in 2021

IndyCar NASCAR doubleheader 2021
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The NTT IndyCar Series will be sharing Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the NASCAR Cup Series in a race weekend doubleheader for the second consecutive season, but both series will be on the road course in August 2021.

IMS announced Wednesday that IndyCar will hold an Aug. 14, 2021 race on its 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. It’ll be a day before NASCAR’s premier series runs the same layout for the first time after the Brickyard 400 was contested on the 2.5-mile oval for the first time in 27 years.

This season’s rescheduling of the IndyCar GMR Grand Prix to July 4, 2019 (a day before the Brickyard 400) led to the first NASCAR-IndyCar doubleheader weekend. The Xfinity Series also raced on the IMS road course for the first time July 4 after the IndyCar race ended.

INDYCAR AT IMS THIS WEEKEND: Harvest GP schedule, entry lists

IndyCar will be holding its second race weekend this year at the IMS road course Friday and Saturday with the Harvest GP.

“Our first NASCAR-INDYCAR weekend was a big success last July, with positive feedback from
our loyal fans who watched the races on NBC and from the drivers, teams and participants
involved,” IMS president Douglas Boles said in a statement. “The Xfinity Series’ debut on the IMS road course provided exactly the kind of thrilling action from the green to checkered flags that we anticipated, so we know the teams and drivers of the Cup Series will put on a great show as they turn left and right for the first time at IMS.

“We can’t wait to welcome back fans to see NASCAR and INDYCAR together during this
exciting weekend as we add another memorable chapter in the long, storied history of the
Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”

It also will mark the first NASCAR Cup-IndyCar doubleheader with a crowd as fans weren’t permitted at IMS in July because of the novel coronvavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Over the course of Wednesday, NASCAR is releasing its 36-race slate for next season. IndyCar has yet to release its full 2021 schedule.