Ashley Judd, Dario Franchitti Split After 12-Year Marriage: Actress and Champion Race Car Driver Call It Quits

By Jon Niles | Jan 30, 2013 11:23 AM EST
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Actress Ashley Judd and three-time Indianapolis 500 champion Indy Car racer, Dario Franchitti, have announced their separation and imminent divorce after a 12-year marriage. The separation is clearly a mutual decision between the 44-year-old Judd and the 39-year-old Scottish racer, Franchitti, as established through the following Twitter exchange:

Ashley Judd has been a loving supporter of Franchitti's racing career, evident through her presence at his races including his Indianapolis 500 championships. Judd has even stirred up some controversy within the Indy Racing League when she called out Venezuelan, female driver, Milka Duno, for reckless and dangerous driving. Franchitti has accompanied Judd to many Hollywood events over the years and has stood by her throughout her outspoken life in the limelight.

Judd is the daughter of famous country music singer Naomi Judd and reached acting success with such films as Kiss the Girls, Double Jeopardy and Where the Heart Is. She has been nominated for numerous Golden Globe and Emmy Awards. Most recently, she starred as Rebecca Winstone in the ABC television series Missing in 2012. This show has since been cancelled.

Judd has been known for more than a few contentious statements. She released her memoir, All That is Bitter and Sweet, in 2011, which included her assertion that Hip-Hop music falls under "rape culture" according to feminist beliefs. She has since taken care of that issue. Another example involves her condemning former Vice President hopeful, Sarah Palin, for hunting wolves. 

The couple was engaged for two years, leading to their wedding on December 12, 2001, at Skibo Castle in Scottland. Ashley's half-sister, famed singer Wynona Judd, was maid of honor at the 2001 wedding and Franchitti's brother and fellow racer, Marino, was his best man. Ashley and Dario split their time between a house in Franchitti's homeland of Scotland and their farm outside of Franklin, Tennessee, here in the States. Franchitti and Judd never had children during their 12-year marriage. Judd cites the astonishing amount of starving children in impoverished areas as her reason not to bring her own offspring into the world. Again, as shown in the Twitter exchange above, Ashley Judd and Dario Franchitti are still close. Unlike most celebrity break ups, this separation seems to be more of a clean break as opposed to a crash and burn incident, if you would please pardon the racing puns.  

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