Danica Patrick will wear a special Dan Wheldon tribute helmet when she races in Saturday’s NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Texas Motor Speedway.
As well as wearing the helmet, Patrick, who drove in the IZOD IndyCar Series race at Las Vegas in which Wheldon was killed, will honour the memory of the two-time Indianapolis 500 winner through a memorial paint scheme on the JR Motorsports-entered No. 7 Chevrolet she will drive in the O’Reilly Auto Parts Challenge 300.
The hood of the car will showcase Wheldon’s "Lionheart" logo in bold letters across a black hood along with the words, "Dan Wheldon: 1978-2011."
The web address DanWheldonMemorial.com will also be featured on the car.
Patrick will wear the special tribute helmet throughout the weekend and it will be auctioned off during the upcoming the Dan Wheldon Memorial auction being organized by IndyCar star Graham Rahal.
"I am humbled and proud to be wearing a special paint-out of my helmet in honor of Dan this weekend," Patrick said Tuesday.
"This helmet will be auctioned off after the race with all proceeds, along with my prize money from this race, going to the Dan Wheldon Foundation. Dan was a good friend and I will miss his great personality and positive attitude. I hope everyone will join me in supporting Susie and their two young boys."
Patrick left the IndyCar series following the Las Vegas race and will drive Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s Nationwide car for the remainder of the NASCAR season. She will then drive a full-time Nationwide Series schedule for Earnhardt’s team in 2012 as well as a partial schedule of Sprint Cup races for Tony Stewart’s Stewart-Haas Racing team.
"It’s exciting to be heading into these final weeks of the season," Patrick said. "Consistency is a big key to success and being in the Go Daddy car for the last three races is a good thing. It will help me get comfortable with the car and the more time I can spend with my crew leading up to next season, the better."
The NASCAR O’Reilly Auto Parts Challenge 300 pre-race show can be seen on TSN2 at noon Saturday with the green flag expected at 1 p.m.