LAS VEGAS -- Daniel Suarez, a Joe Gibbs Racing driver who split his time racing in the United States and his native Mexico from 2011 to 2014 before running full time in NASCAR, said he doesn't believe Brian France's endorsement of Donald Trump will affect his NASCAR career.
Suarez, who sits second in the NASCAR Xfinity Series standings, said Friday afternoon that he doesn't pay much attention to politics, and initially was unaware that other drivers and France, NASCAR's chairman, appeared Monday at a campaign rally for the presidential candidate.
Trump angered the Mexican community in June 2015 when he said, "When Mexico sends its people [to the United States], they're not sending their best. They're sending people that have lots of problems and they're bringing those problems with us. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists."
Suarez was unaware of any negative reaction to France's endorsement of Trump from either his Mexican sponsors or his fans.
"I'm very proud of all the work, all the support I have received from NASCAR, from the United States," Suarez said after Xfinity Series practice at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. "And honestly, I'm very proud to be Mexican, to be a Latin American driver, to be a Latin American person, because ... maybe without being Mexican, who knows if I would have all the support I'm having from the United States and from NASCAR.
"Overall, I feel like everyone makes their own decisions, and there's nothing we can do about it."
Suarez has support from companies backed by Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim and Slim's family, which no longer has any business associations with Trump's empire since Trump's remarks.
The controversy over France's endorsement will wane with time, Suarez said. The 24-year-old driver will just concentrate on racing.
"Honestly, I'm happy where we're at right now and I feel at home in NASCAR," Suarez said. "I think Brian can do everything he wants on his own, but NASCAR is different. I'm in NASCAR, I'm not in Brian France whatever. I'm in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. I feel [at] home here. I'm not going anywhere."