Auto racing, NASCAR in particular, has had an image that portrays a lack of diversity. This reputation is not wholly undeserved. The sport was founded in the southern United States and while it has become an international sanctioning body with series in Mexico, Canada, Europe, and used to hold events in Australia and Japan.
NASCAR’s top 3 series has been more diverse than most people think. The first was Mario Andretti, who won the 1967 Daytona 500. Australian Marco Ambrose has won 7 races, 2 in the Sprint Cup, and 5 in the Xfinity Series. Canadian Ron Fellows has 6 wins, 4 Xfinity, 2 Truck Series. Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya has won 3 races, 2 Sprint Cup, 1 Xfinity. African Americans have found success as well. The legendary Wendell Scott, the Jackie Robinson of NASCAR won a Sprint Cup Series race in 1965 at Speedway Park in Florida. Many other African Americans including Elias Bowie, Charlie Scott, George Wiltshire, Randy Bethea, Willy T. Ribbs and, most recently, Bill Lester have competed in Sprint Cup competition. Darrell Wallace Jr. has won 5 Truck Series races from 2013-2014.
One of the first Hispanic drivers to enter the Xfinity Series was Carlos Contreras. Born in Mexico City, Contreras first attempted a race in 2002, but failed to qualify. He did join the series in 2003, and has raced part time ever since. He has raced in the Truck Series, with 5 top 10’s, and in the NASCAR Toyota Series, which is held in Mexico, with 23 top 10’s, but in the Xfinity Series, he has failed to score a top 10.
From 2005 to 2007, Contreras raced for Fritz-Bradshaw Racing, owned by Armando Fitz and Terry Bradshaw. In 2006, they raced in 6 races. For two of those races, The 2006 Telcel-Motorola 200 Presented by Banamex at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico City, Mexico, and The 2006 Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen, he was sponsored by Gould’s Pumps, and wore this driver suit.
This SFI 5 rated triple layer driver suit is in good condition, and doesn’t show much use, not shocking for a suit worn for only two races.
The belt is a bit wide, and has CARLOS CONTRERAS in traditional cursive embroidered into it. The Warranty Tag is located behind the zipper.The legs are black and have red stripes running up them. There are no logos in television logos present.
Diversity in auto racing is a great thing and drivers like Carlos make NASCAR great. The diversity of fans and sponsors is only going to make the sport better. NASCAR is no longer regional, not even national, it’s international! I love that!
Next week…We’re going vintage…I’m looking forward to it, and I hope you are too!