San Diego television sports anchor Ross Shimabuku has been suspended without pay after implying a sexist slur against NASCAR driver Danica Patrick in on-air comments last week.
The controversy began late last week when Patrick complained about female athletes being described as "sexy," when male athletes are not. "Is there any other word that you can use to describe me?" she asked. Shimabuku replied, “Oh, I've got a few words. Starts with a 'B' and it's not 'beautiful.’"
He called Patrick “a pretty girl" who makes “money in sponsorships because of it. But what's not attractive is that she's sexy and she knows it,” he said. “What she says and what she does are two totally different things. She always has a chip on her shoulder, trying to prove something.”
Shimabuku backtracked quickly after video of his comments went viral last week, saying, “I truly apologize to anyone who may have been offended by (my) comments. It was not meant to be an attack on Danica. I have worked with her before at Phoenix (International Raceway), and I think she’s great for the sport. I hope she does great this weekend at the Daytona 500.”
Fox 5 San Diego announced via Twitter that Shimabuku has been suspended for one week without pay.