Lowe's Fernandez Racing: The Right Combination

Story Courtesy of Michelin. To read more, visit Michelin Motorsports and download the digital copy of “The Alley.”Adrian Fernandez should be a locksmith. The popular veteran driver and American Le Mans Series team co-owner and co driver of the #15 Lowe’s Acura prototype has a knack for putting together the right combinations of people, equipment, and partners.

Now in its third season of ALMS competition, the team has rocketed to the top of the LMP2 class in 2009 with victories in the first four races of the season.

One of the keys to their success is co-owner and managing director Tom Anderson, a 40-year veteran of motorsports with six CART championships, 53 major open-wheel victories and three Indianapolis 500 wins.

The two joined forces to form Fernandez Racing in 2000. Anderson matches his experience with a down-to-earth management style to achieve continuing success.

His choice of co-driver was one of the most important for Fernandez. Once again, he made a great choice, selecting his protégé and friend Luis Diaz to join the team in 2007 after enjoying success in sportscar racing. His quickness and style match Fernandez well and the two are among the most popular drivers in Mexico.

Anderson and Fernandez himself also deserve much of the credit for creating an approach that attracts and retains key people like engineer John Ward, team manager Mike Sales and general manager Steve Miller. The talent and continuity is a big part of the team’s success.

So are partners like Lowe’s and Acura. So much so that when Fernandez and Diaz claimed the prototype victory in the Michelin ® GREEN X® Challenge earlier in the season, Fernandez, highly aware of Lowe’s environmental initiatives, invited Lowe’s Chairman and CEO Robert Niblock to join he and Diaz on the podium to accept the prestigious award.

One more thing, when asked to name his favorite track on the ALMS circuit, Fernandez does not hesitate, “Road America” he answers. “Elkhart Lake is just a fantastic track to drive.”

A victory here would fit right into a 2009 ALMS championship plan.

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