Danica Patrick's divorce official
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Danica Patrick's divorce is final, completing a process that began more than five months ago when she announced she was ending her marriage to Paul Hospenthal.
Patrick, who created social media buzz two months ago when she acknowledged her relationship with fellow NASCAR driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr., filed to end her seven-year marriage to Hospenthal on Jan. 3, in the Superior Court of Arizona in Maricopa County.
Patrick cited an "irretrievably broken" marriage. Because the divorce was not contested, it was eligible to become official after a 60-day waiting period.
According to court documents obtained Thursday by ESPN.com, the consent decree was signed by a judge on April 15 and filed two days later.
Patrick, 31, announced her plans to divorce via Facebook on Nov. 20, the day after she was named the most popular driver in the Nationwide Series.
"I am sad to inform my fans that after 7 years, Paul and I have decided to amicably end our marriage," she wrote. "This isn't easy for either of us, but mutually it has come to this. He has been an important person and friend in my life and that's how we will remain moving forward."
Patrick confirmed her relationship with Stenhouse, 25, in early February. The two Sprint Cup Series rookies are very open about their relationship, sitting together during drivers meetings and appearing in public.
Stenhouse told the crowd during driver introductions for the March race at Bristol Motor Speedway, "Sorry guys, she's taken."
On April 18, the day after the divorce was finalized, Patrick wrote on Twitter: "My lovely @StenhouseJr took me to dinner and a movie. #painandgain is worth a trip to the theater!"
According to court documents, Patrick and Hospenthal, a physical therapist in Scottsdale, Ariz., entered into a prenuptial agreement prior to their marriage in 2005 that defined property interest. She stated no alimony will be necessary and paid for all court costs.
"My spouse and I did acquire community property during our marriage, and it will be divided as indicated on a Settlement Agreement which will be submitted to the court at a later date," Patrick said in the filing.