|Daniel Suarez has a lot going for him|
Yeah, we’ve known that for weeks.
“We also have the opportunity to announce a new partner in ARRIS that will not only sponsor Carl, but also share a vision with Carlos Slim Domit and Escuderia TELMEX to develop Mexican and Latin American drivers in NASCAR,” said Gibbs in a press release. “We are excited to have Daniel Suarez as part of that program and look forward to watching his development in the NASCAR Nationwide Series next season."
That’s the real news.
Suarez is a 22-year-old Mexican driver and graduate of NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity program and appears ready to move up. He’s been driving fulltime in the NASCAR Mexico Toyota Series and currently leads the points with nine victories. He also has a couple of wins on the K&N Pro Series East and seven Top 10 finishes. He’s already has one Nationwide start for JGR, finishing 19th at Richmond earlier this year.
And it also doesn’t hurt to have Domit in your corner.
Carlos Slim Domit is oldest the son of the richest man in the world, Carlos Slim, according to Forbe’s. The father has been trading the top spot with Bill Gates, Slim moving back in front in July according to Forbe’s, with a net worth of $80 billion. Yup. $80 billion.
The family has long been into racing, nearly buying the old Honda Formula One team a few years back, and supporting the Drive for Diversity program.
"Over the past 12 years, we have worked very hard together with NASCAR in the development of a racing series and building a strong ladder system for our drivers," Domit said. "Having the opportunity for Daniel Suarez to demonstrate his talent to compete in the NASCAR Nationwide Series is very rewarding and encouraging to us all."
There’s another reason why Suarez is getting the chance now. It makes good business sense for Toyota. Here are a few notes from a speech last year by Jim Lentz, president and CEO of Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A.
· Hispanics are the fastest growing part of the American population, currently accounting for nearly half of all growth in the U.S.
· The projected buying power of Hispanics will to grow to $1.5 trillion by the end of next year. In fact, if the American Hispanic buying power was a standalone country, it would be one of the top 20 economies in the world.
· Hispanics buy more Toyotas than any other car brand (as do African American and Asian Americans) and the company wants to keep it that way. The involvement with Suarez is just one of the company's Hispanic initiatives.
Finally, sponsor ARRIS is a “broadband and video delivery technology” company based in Suwanee, Ga., outside Atlanta. Might seem like an odd fit for NASCAR sponsorship, until you realize Domit and his father control one of the world's largest telecommunications companies, Telmex and its U.S. affiliate, Telmex USA, and has plenty of broadband and video delivery technology needs.
Sounds like a perfect fit.