Fox black flags Danica ad

January 28, 2008
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Danica Motorsports insiders have been skeptical
 about  Danica Patrick’s self-promotion plan ever
 since she raced onto the open-wheel scene
 more  than five years ago.

 From her spread in men’s magazine FHM to her
 bad-girl persona, Patrick never has been afraid to shake things up.

Now she appears in a ad that is too hot for television. The spot was to appear in Sunday’s Super Bowl, but was black flagged by the Fox TV network, which is airing the game.

She long ago took a very different path than Sarah Fisher, noted Eric De Bord, president and CEO of PROtential, a Woodridge, Ill.-based firm that pairs sponsors with motorsports properties.

 “Personally, I think Danica Patrick has received some poor advice,” De Bord told IBJ in 2003

The ensuing years likely changed many sports marketers’ minds, as Patrick is easily the Indy Racing League’s most popular driver. She sells more merchandise than the rest of the IRL drivers combined.

Still, some sports marketers wondered if Patrick made a misstep when last year she signed on as the primary spokeswoman for, the Internet domain name registrar that made a name for itself with Super Bowl ads featuring scantily clad women.

If you want to see Danica's most recent ad, go to The entire ad won’t be available until game day Feb. 3, but you can get a preview now. Let us know what you think.
  • They're all running scared after that Jackson half time show.
  • Eric De Bord thought that Danica made a marketing mistake in 2003, yet she is the most recognizable face of open wheel racing (both series). Maybe she should consider Dancing With the Stars look what that did for Helio.
  • Well, she will never win a race so this is the next best thing.
  • GoDaddy is proving again that the commercial buzz around the game can overshadow the game itself. What a fantastic new spin on SuperBowl commercials.
    The social marketing aspects alone make this a top story for this year's game!
  • Danica obviously didn't receive bad advice in terms of exploiting the system for financial gain. But the advisor might have forgotten to mention one small detail: forfeiting her soul.
  • She'll win one sometime soon. She's got one of the most primo rides in the IRL, and she's had fantastic mentors in Dario and TK.
  • Heck. Danica should bank as much money as she can now, even with her somewhat questionable endorsements. With rumored weight equalization coming to IRL (meaning all cars will weigh the same, with add-ons for the smaller drivers), Danica loses her edge on the racetrack. If she goes another season or two without winning anything and maybe even does worse with the new weight system, her racing career could fizzle out. Derrick Coleman did suggestive ads for BK Knights shoes and no one questioned it. Sex sells. Sarah Fisher would do the ads if anyone would pay her to do them.

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