Watkins Glen: Victor Gonzalez Jr. preview

Victor Gonzalez Jr. and The Ricky Martin Foundation to Make Nationwide Series Debut at Watkins Glen Puerto Rican to drive ...

Watkins Glen: Victor Gonzalez Jr. preview

Victor Gonzalez Jr. and The Ricky Martin Foundation to Make Nationwide Series Debut at Watkins Glen
Puerto Rican to drive #05 Day Racing Chevrolet

Nashville, TN (August 4, 2010) ... Victor Gonzalez Jr. will make his NASCAR Nationwide Series debut at the famed Watkins Glen International road course this week in the Zippo 200. However, this will not be your "normal" debut for Gonzalez Jr., who became the first Puerto Rican driver to compete in the Nationwide Series last year at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal, Canada. This race will carry a special meaning for Gonzalez Jr. and the #05 team.

Victor Gonzalez Jr. recently became an advocate for The Ricky Martin Foundation, and has spent the past few weeks learning about and working with the Foundation.

The Ricky Martin Foundation advocates for the well-being of children around the globe in critical areas such as social justice, education, and health. Their principal project, People for Children, condemns child exploitation as a consequence of human trafficking and modern day slavery.

"My involvement with the Foundation started when Ricky Martin send me a 'tweet' wishing me well at Road America earlier this year," Gonzalez said. "I was aware of the Foundation and met with their staff. I am honored to support their mission and assist with the fundraising efforts to strengthen their initiatives on behalf of children's rights."

"When I heard about human trafficking and learned how children are exploited worldwide, I knew that I could help by being a 'Voice of Awareness'", Gonzalez continued. "I feel it is my responsibility as an athlete to be a voice spreading the message of the Foundation. The best available estimate is that 1.2 million children are trafficked worldwide every year for exploitation purposes such as forced labor, commercial sexual exploitation, prostitution, and other forms of modern day slavery."

The Zippo 200 Nationwide Series event this weekend will be Gonzalez' first NASCAR race at the 2.45-mile, 11 turn road course, but it will not be his first race at The Glen. Gonzalez has three top-ten finishes in three Barber Pro Series events at Watkins Glen, the last being in 2000. Gonzalez has three career Nationwide Series races under his belt -- Montreal in '09, Phoenix and Road America in '10 -- with a best finish of 14th in Montreal last August. Gonzalez was in line for a top ten finish in the first Nationwide Series race at Road America in June before getting spun and finishing 23rd.

"I can't tell you how much satisfaction I receive from working with the Ricky Martin Foundation," Gonzalez added. "In fact, during semester I will speak with youngsters about human trafficking, the second most lucrative crime in the world."

"I am so pumped for the race at Watkins Glen this week," Gonzalez said. "Every time I look at Tau, the logo of the Ricky Martin Foundation, on my car I think of all the kids that I represent. I feel so blessed with what I have, my glass is always half full, not half empty. I will be racing my hardest for all those kids and the Foundation."

-source: victor Gonzalez jr. PR

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