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Suarez wins L.A. NASCAR Mexico race: “This really means a lot”

Suarez was one of the 13 drivers who failed to make show for third edition of the Clash in Los Angeles, but unlike his fellow Cup drivers, his day was not yet over.

He was the only driver running the doubleheader, having also entered the NASCAR Mexico Series exhibition race that was set to follow the Cup Series action.

For Suarez, it was a return to his roots, as he got his start in stock car racing by running in the NASCAR Mexico Series. He would go to become a NASCAR Xfinity Series champion in 2016 and the first-ever Mexican-born driver to win a NASCAR Cup Series race in 2022.

In the first Mexico Series race inside the United States in almost a decade, Suarez ran neat the front for the entire event. In the closing stages, he pushed forward and took the lead for the first time with 30 laps to go. He passed four-time Mexico Series champion Ruben Garcia Jr., and never relinquished the lead again.

Suarez captured the checkered flag ahead of Santiago Tovar and Alex de Alba.

“Man, this really means a lot,” said Suarez afterwards as the crowd roared in approval. “Thank you fans for coming last-minute. It really means a lot. The people who know me, they know that this race means a lot to me. All these drivers, all these teams … I grew up with this. If it wasn’t for this series — NASCAR Mexico — I wouldn’t be in the Cup Series today. So, thank you NASCAR Mexico, thank you all the drivers, thank you to the fans. You make me feel at home.”

Speaking on the battle for the win, he said: “Let me tell you, it wasn’t easy. I didn’t feel like we were the fastest car out there. I think Ruben [Garcia] with the No. 88, Abraham [Calderon] with the No. 2 car — those guys were faster than me. But I knew I didn’t have the raw speed to beat them, so I needed to be smart and save my tires, save my brakes for the long run, and luckily it paid off.”

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This article was originally published by a www.motorsport.com . Read the Original article here. .

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