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Patrick's victory a proud moment for pioneer Janet Guthrie

Struggling for acceptance was a way of life for racing pioneer Janet Guthrie. The 70-year-old likely had the talent to be the first woman to win in NASCAR or IndyCar, but that honor went to Danica Patrick. And Guthrie couldn't be prouder, writes Ryan McGee.

Updated: April 20, 2008, 7:58 PM ET
By Ryan McGee | ESPN The Magazine

When Danica Patrick crossed the finish line at Twin Ring Motegi, two thoughts immediately popped into my brain.

Thank heavens she won't have to answer any more Anna Kournikova questions. I wonder if Janet Guthrie is watching.

"I haven't seen it yet," the groundbreaking Guthrie said from her home in Colorado on Sunday afternoon. "But I am very excited to watch it this evening."

Like the rest of America, Guthrie wasn't able to keep up with the rain-delayed television ...

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