NASCAR star Danica Patrick announces divorce on Facebook

The newly-single Patrick received thousands of supportive messages, and was immediately hit on by her Facebook fans.


Jordan Valinsky

Internet Culture

Published Nov 22, 2012   Updated Mar 3, 2020, 12:29 am CST

After seven years of marriage, Danica Patrick announced on Facebook that she’s splitting from her husband, Paul Hospenthal.

In a note to fans posted Tuesday, the 30-year-old NASCAR racer said she and Hospenthal decided to end their marriage amicably. The pair married in Arizona, where they currently reside, in November 2005 and have no children.

“This isn’t easy for either of us, but mutually it has come to this,” Patrick wrote, in a post that received 7,600 likes and 1,000 shares. “He has been an important person and friend in my life and that’s how we will remain moving forward.”

Patrick raced into the public’s consciousness after being the highest-finishing woman in Indianapolis 500 history, placing third in 2009. She’s also a top-10 ranked driver in NASCAR’s national series this year, driving for JR Motorsports. Outside of racing, she’s a spokeswoman for, regularly starring in the company’s racy television ads.

Fans wished Patrick well, offering their condolences and messages of support.

“It’s never easy when a marriage comes to an end. I wish you both luck, love and happiness,” wrote Laurie Drysdale-Campbell. Another fan wrote “Drive hard and be safe.”

Other fans saw the opportunity as a moment to hit on Patrick, as the comments were filled with a slew of “call me” jokes. “Sorry danica im [sic] single you can call me if you want to do you want my number,” offered Michael Decker, and then posted his phone number.

Photo via David Shankbone/Flickr

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*First Published: Nov 22, 2012, 3:36 pm CST