NASCAR America: Burned back can’t keep Daniel Suarez out of go-karts

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Daniel Suarez’s first taste of auto racing came in go-karts in Mexico, so when he returns to his homeland, he continues to race them.

“The last time I raced, I remember they gave me a brand new car and I knew I was going to have a shot to win the race,” Suarez said on Wednesday’s edition of NASCAR America. “That was a couple of years ago. … I went to the race, and I won.”

While Suarez has not raced a go-kart in Mexico in a couple of years, he returned to one of the sports’ marquee events during the last off-season: a 12-hour go-kart race in Brazil. In that endurance event, three drivers run stints of about an hour and a half.

“Those go-karts are very demanding,” Suarez said. “You don’t have power steering, you don’t have anything and after three hours in those things, it’s tough.

“It’s maybe one of the toughest races I’ve ever done – the first time I did it because I didn’t know what to expect. The second time I knew, and I was prepared.”

MORE: Thumb feeling better, Daniel Suarez is ready to add memories at Richmond 

It is made even tougher when there is an equipment failure and injury.

In that first 12-hour race, “one of the springs from the shock broke and the shock was in my seat. … It was in the middle of the race and we’re in the top five … and I couldn’t stop because I would mess everything up, so I burned my back.”

It left a scar that can still be seen today, but it prepared him to race with injury – which is something Suarez had to do this spring after injuring his thumb in a crash at Texas.

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