Danica Patrick losing GoDaddy as primary car sponsor

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- Danica Patrick is losing GoDaddy as her primary car sponsor.

The internet domain giant has decided to pull its NASCAR sponsorship of Patrick's No. 10 Chevrolet, which is fielded by Stewart-Haas Racing.

The 33-year-old Patrick is in the final year of her contract at SHR and landing a primary sponsor could be key to her stock car future.

"I'm sad. I'm a little surprised and I'm sad," Patrick told The Associated Press on Wednesday. "But to say I didn't imagine this was not a scenario would be a lie. It's bittersweet. It's going to be really weird to think I won't drive the bright green, can't-miss-it car next year."

Phil Bienert, the chief marketing officer at GoDaddy, told the AP it was strictly a business decision as data showed the company "we are past brand marketing in the U.S."

He added that GoDaddy is working on a personal services contract with Patrick, who is considered one of the most of recognizable drivers in the world.

"Danica transcends racing and is a real source of inspiration," he said. "We are working now to see what our relationship looks like going forward."

Bienert also said Patrick's "record-setting season makes it tough to leave this motorsports sponsorship, without a doubt."

Patrick has two top-10 finishes this season and ranks 16th in points.

She has had GoDaddy as an associate sponsor since 2007. The company has been her main backer since the 2010 IndyCar season when she was with Andretti Autosport.

"GoDaddy has been an incredible partner for a very long time and our brands have really grown up together," Patrick said. "At the same time, this is a new opportunity for a brand to pair with me and Stewart-Haas Racing and achieve the kind of growth we experienced with GoDaddy."

Brett Frood, Stewart-Haas Racing's executive vice president, said Patrick has "unparalleled resolve and tenacity.

"She is an individual who transcends the sport and we look forward to fostering new partnerships for her and the No. 10 team," he added.