Not one American will be competing in this weekend's United States Grand Prix, but our neighbors to the south have a driver of their own.
Mexican racer Sergio “Checo” Perez will be racing for the Sauber Team just 850 miles away from his hometown—close enough to draw a large fan base come race time.
"I do expect quite a bit of Mexican fans to be around so it will be a very special weekend for myself,” Perez said. “I hope we can really enjoy it."
Guadalajara, Mexico is home for the 22 year-old Sauber team driver. Ranked 10th in overall 2012 Formula 1 standings, he's eager to please his home country.
"It's definitely one of the best of the best feelings to race close from your people to race for their support. It definitely will be very, very special," Perez said.
Grand Prix racing is far more popular south of the border than here in the United States. Mexican journalists follow the circuit around the world.
"Mexico, as I have said, has a big tradition of Formula 1 fans."
Carlos Contreras is a sports reporter for La Afician. The Mexican journalist says though he is young, people should pay attention to Checo's talent.
"He is a really good driver and he's not too aggressive but he knows how to keep the tires on,” Contreras said. “If you're a good tire keeper you get the chance to make points, you have a chance to make it to the podium."
For the up-and-coming driver positioned to make his country proud, it all comes down to this weekend and a near-home track advantage.