On Thursday, Danica Patrick announced she will be a full-time NASCAR driver in 2012, leaving behind the Indy Car series which made her a star.

In 2011, Patrick split time between Indy Car and NASCAR’s second division Nationwide Series, where she saw moderate success, but no wins. Next year, she will continue to race for Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s Nationwide team, and also drive part-time for Tony Stewart’s Stewart-Haas Racing, which runs Sundays in NASCAR’s premier Sprint Cup Series.

“We are pleased Danica Patrick has chosen to race full time in NASCAR in 2012,” NASCAR Chairman Brian France said. “She has demonstrated a strong desire to compete and NASCAR provides the best opportunity to race against the top drivers in the world with the largest and most loyal fan base in motorsports on a week-to-week basis.”

Despite the move, Patrick may still continue to compete in the Indainapolis 500, Indy Car’s showcase race.

[Fox Sports]