Dara Torres To Danica Patrick: Joking About Drugs Isn't Funny!

Dara Torres To Danica Patrick: Joking About Drugs Isn't Funny!
Dara Torres and Danica Patrick
Armando Arorizo/Landov; John Sommers II/Reuters/Landov

05/30/2009 AT 03:20 PM EDT

When five-time Olympian Dara Torres is not winning gold medals in the pool, she is actively promoting a clean sport. So the 42-year-old swimmer was surprised to pick up this week's Sports Illustrated with Indy racer Danica Patrick's thoughts on drug testing.

When asked by radio host and writer Dan Patrick, "If you could take a performance-enhancing drug and not get caught, would you do it if it allowed you to win Indy?" Danica replied, "Well, then it's not cheating, is it? If nobody finds out? Yeah, it would be like finding a gray area."

Says Torres, "As an athlete that has been tested a thousand times whether through blood or urine samples – I've even offered DNA samples to prove that I'm clean – I really can't ever imagine saying if you don't get caught that it's not cheating."

Torres and Patrick do have a few things in common, such as sporting milk mustaches for the famous Got Milk? campaign. But Patrick, who herself has never been accused of being a drug cheat, has also participated in rigorous drug testing in racing.

So in response, Danica Patrick, 26, says, "Interviews with Dan Patrick are always fun and playful and obviously I was making a joke. If Dara has issues with how I handle myself or would like further context of the interview, then she can reach out to me directly and not through the media."

Not wanting to ruffle feathers but staunchly supporting zero tolerance for performance enhancing drugs, Torres says, "Just by reading it, you hope that she was just kidding. After her great performance in the Indy 500 this past weekend, it was so impressive what she did, it just kind of spoils it a little bit. As the strong role model that she is, I would encourage her to rethink what she said."

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