Danica Patrick confirms Indy 500 return in 2018

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WATKINS GLEN, NY - AUGUST 06: Danica Patrick, driver of the #10 Aspen Dental Ford, stands on the grid during qualifying for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series I Love NY 355 at The Glen at Watkins Glen International on August 6, 2017 in Watkins Glen, New York. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Danica Patrick will return to Indianapolis Motor Speedway to race in the 2018 Indianapolis 500.

The long-time NASCAR and IndyCar driver confirmed the news as she announced her retirement from a full-time racing schedule Friday afternoon in Miami. She plans to race in both the Indy 500 and the Daytona 500 next season.

“I’m really excited about (competing in those races),” said Patrick, holding back tears. “I think it’s gonna be a great way to cap (my racing career) off.”

Patrick spent seven years in the IndyCar series between 2005 and 2011, racing for Rahal Letterman Racing, Andretti Green Racing, and Andretti Autosport. In her first Indy 500 appearance in 2005, she posted her best qualifying performance of fourth. Her best finish came in 2009, when she landed on the podium, finishing third.