Danica Patrick in smokin' 'Shape' on magazine cover

Helio Castroneves Danica Patrick

's cover shot on the June issue of Shape magazine.

Oh yeah, he's probably seen it. Why else would he grin and beg to change the subject back to the race?

Patrick's been spending a lot of time lately in bikinis. She was featured in the 2009 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition, where, in an interview, she said: “If you told me I’d model swimsuits in any way shape or form 10 years ago I’d have said, ‘Are you insane? I doubt that’ll happen.’ But I have a lot of fun with it. I enjoy the feminine aspect of the things I get to do and it allows me to get that side out there and have fun.”

(If you haven't seen it, she's sprawled on top of a Shelby Cobra 427 convertible in the four-page SI spread.)

So now here she is rockin' the cover of Shape in a yellow-and-white striped bikini, a photo that has race fan tongues wagging (and drooling).

Patrick told the fitness magazine how she keeps her 105 pounds of racing queen in shape. She runs for an hour every day, plus works on her shoulders, forearms and backs with a personal trainer. "I skip days here and there and don’t beat myself up for it,” she said. (She obviously doesn't skip many days.)

She also eats a high protein and complex carbohydrates diet.

Typical breakfast: a three egg-white omelet and oatmeal with cinnamon, flax meal and brown sugar. Favored lunch: an open-faced turkey sandwich with lettuce, tomato, mayo and mustard, and a slice of cheese from time to time.

“I worry about the scale like anyone else, but I have to make it through five-hour races. It’s a constant battle for me," she says.

We think she's winning it, hands down.

| Lisa Gutierrez, The Star