Feb 26, 2012 at 04:06 PM
written by

Presidential Politics Front and Center at Daytona

Daytona 500 viewers today won't have to go far to be reminded it's an election year. While Mitt Romney will make an appearance at the track, The Rick Santorum for President campaign will sponsor its own car -- Front Row Motorsports' No. 26 Ford Fusion. This comes a day after the Tea Party had their say in sponsoring Jason Bowles' #81 Dodge entry in NASCAR's Nationwide Series event at Daytona.

Santorum's campaign messaging will be on the hood and quarter panels of Tony Raines' No. 26 Ford Fusion for Sunday's season-opening NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at the 2.5-mile superspeedway in Daytona Beach, Fla. The former U.S. Senator looks to draw more attention to his "Made-in-the-USA" platform as he heads into the February 28 Michigan primary election.

"NASCAR and the Daytona 500 are about as American as you can get - and it's great to have my campaign represented by one of these incredible machines," said Santorum. "The race weekend is a wonderful tradition that we're excited to be a part of as we spread our message. I like how Tony Raines turned some heads last weekend with his qualifying run and we'd like to keep turning heads, too. I think we're both looking for a win in the end."

With the Santorum campaign coming aboard the No. 26 Ford, Front Row Motorsports will have three sponsored entries in Sunday's Daytona 500.

"We're glad to partner with the Santorum campaign," said team owner Bob Jenkins. "We know there will be millions of eyes on these cars on Sunday and we know we can help get their message out. It's a pretty tight battle for the Republican nomination right now, and the former Senator is right in the thick of it. We hope we're in the thick of it come Sunday out on the racetrack, too."

Sunday's Daytona 500 will air nationwide on FOX, with coverage beginning at noon