Race car driver Danica Patrick, husband Paul Hospenthal divorcing after 7 years

Couple had been married 7 years

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Danica Patrick said Tuesday she and her husband are divorcing after seven years of marriage.

   Patrick announced the split with Paul Hospenthal on her Facebook page. She said the two have amicably decided to end their marriage.

"This isn't easy for either of us, but mutually it has come to this," she wrote. "He has been an important person and friend in my life and that's how we will remain moving forward."

   Hospenthal is a physical therapist who met Patrick while treating her for a non-racing injury. The two were married in 2005, and he is 17 years older than the 30-year-old NASCAR driver.

   Patrick just completed her first full season in NASCAR, running the full Nationwide schedule and 10 Sprint Cup Series races.

   She finished 10th in Nationwide points, becoming the highest-finishing female driver in the history of NASCAR's three national series. The previous record was held by Sara Christian, who finished 13th in 1949 in the Cup series.

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