In an industry surprise, Indian NASCAR Truck Series driver, Narain Karthikeyan, who has run a total of 9 out of 25 races, has swept NASCAR’s Most Popular Driver contest for the Camping World Truck Series. Karthikeyan, who came to the American sport after having won races in the A1GP series, is best known as “the Fastest Indian in the World” as he was the first Indian to race in Formula 1.“Racing in NASCAR has been such a rewarding experience, both personally and professionally. From the other drivers to the fans, everyone has been extremely welcoming and supportive,” says Karthikeyan. “I really want to thank those fans in India and the US who voted for me. I am so honored.”
Beating out veterans and fan favorites like Ron Hornaday and Todd Bodine, Karthikeyan’s Most Popular Driver win proves the power of India by its sheer number of people. Driving for Starbeast Motorsports, a team whose mission it is to bridge the businesses of India and the United States through NASCAR racing, Karthikeyan is one of India’s most popular athletes – a country that boasts 1.2 billion residents.
“Narain not only has proven himself to be a skilled driver in any type of vehicle, he also brings with him literally millions of fans who want to understand the US and NASCAR better,” says Starbeast CEO and Founder, Miguel Abaroa. “Our goal is to bridge that gap between two countries through racing, sponsorship and other forms of entertainment that use Narain as content. This Most Popular Driver award solidifies our choice in Narain and speaks volumes to his potential in NASCAR.”
Karthikeyan looks to race a full season for Starbeast Motorsports in 2011.