Daniel Suarez: “In Mexico, we don’t have that. I mean, that’s not an option.”
Daniel Suarez began his racing career in his home country of Mexico. He progressed from go karts to the NASCAR Mexico Series. 6 years ago, he made a life-changing career decision to move to America in search of the next step.
He started in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. His first win came at Columbus Motor Speedway. From there, Suarez moved to the NCWTS, the NXS and last year he landed full-time in the NASCAR Cup Series.
Through every step of that ladder system, dirt was absent. In the early stages, dirt wasn’t even an option. Now, he’s curious…
“I work very hard to try to be a good student,” Suarez tells Fox Sports of his progression into the Cup Series. “If like like, with all the technology that we have right now. If you’re not a good student, it’s because you don’t want to.”
“We have a lot of tools. We have a lot of data. A lot of information to learn from the guys who’ve been doing this for 15-20 years. So far, it’s been good.”
Jeff Gordon: So many of the cup drivers have a background in dirt or maybe they grew up on a short slick late model racing track. But, you didn’t have any of that background. I’m amazed that you’ve been able to learn as fast as you have.
“That’s very funny that you are saying that. When I moved to the US for the very first time, 6 years ago. I was watching people racing on dirt.”
“In Mexico, we don’t have that. I mean, that’s not an option. Actually, I didn’t know that people race on dirt. For me, it was an adventure to watch and learn from that.”
“So far, I’ve never been on dirt, in my life in a race car. But, that’s in my list of new things for the future. Hopefully, maybe one day I can get that one done.”
Jeff Gordon: Well, when you’re ready… You might even be able to talk me into getting back on dirt. I might do it with ya.
Jeff Gordon ran 805 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series over his 25 year career at the top level of stock car racing. 93 wins later, Jeff Gordon sits 3rd on the all-time wins list.
Early in Gordon’s racing career, he dominated the open wheel short tracks. Between 1989 and 1992, Gordon grabbed a podium in 22 of 40 USAC midget car events.
Last year, Jeff Gordon offered a retro t-shirt to his online store. It wasn’t from his cup days. Instead, the shirt featured a dirt sprint car. The dirt racing car featured on the t-shirt was driven by Gordon in 1985.
To my knowledge, the last dirt race run by Jeff Gordon was back in 2010. He ran the 2010 Prelude to the Dream at Eldora Speedway. Jeff Gordon finished 22nd in that event.
The Prelude to Dream was run from 2005-2012. It was a special show run by Tony Stewart which brought a all-star field of current and former NASCAR drivers to the dirt track. It was run on the week of the crown jewel Dirt Late Model Dream event. Jeff Gordon also ran the 2008 race (14th) and the 2007 (3rd).