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Understanding Trackhouse’s Many Teams and Drivers

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Joshua Lipowski

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What’s Happening?

No race team has a driver lineup quite like Trackhouse. Plenty of drivers across different racing series are under contract with Trackhouse, but they are not racing under the Trackhouse banner. It might be very confusing for fans, so, here is a breakdown of everything going on at Trackhouse for 2024.

  • Trackhouse has five drivers under contract for 2024 across three different race teams. Trackhouse only has two official NASCAR Cup Series teams, so they need to rely on alliances with Kaulig Racing and Spire Motorsports to fill in their extra drivers.
  • Trackhouse joined the NASCAR Cup Series in 2021 with Justin Marks and Pitbull co-owning the team. Since then, the team has won 6 races including a Championship 4 appearance by Ross Chastain in 2022.
  • Fans love what Trackhouse is doing and the excitement they bring to the sport. From the unique drivers to the incredible personalities, Trackhouse is very exciting for many fans.

Trackhouses Race Teams/Team Alliances

Before looking at who is driving for Trackhouse, let’s break down all of the race teams and team alliances Trackhouse Racing has for 2024 in the NASCAR National Touring Series. This includes three different teams.

Trackhouse Racing (Cup): #1 and #99

Two teams will race under the Trackhouse Racing banner full-time in 2024. The #99 car was the first Trackhouse team, which started in 2021. The #1 car came in along with Ross Chastain after Trackhouse bought out Chip Ganassi Racing’s NASCAR program after the 2021 season.

There may be a third entry at select races as either Project 91 or a car for one of Trackhouse’s other drivers, more on that later. However, that is still to be announced.

Kaulig Racing (Xfinity): #97

Kaulig Racing enters an alliance with Trackhouse for 2024 by fielding the #97 car. There is a chance there could be a Cup Series alliance between the two as well. This alliance has already made an impact as the Trackhouse #99 car and the Kaulig #16 car in the Cup Series swapped crew chiefs for the 2024 season.

This makes sense for both sides as it allows Trackhouse to expand into the Xfinity Series without building a dedicated race team, at least not yet. It also allows Kaulig Racing, which is not a key partner Chevy team, to align with another key partner Chevy team. Kaulig currently has its race shops on Richard Childress Racing’s campus.

Spire Motorsports (Cup): #71

Spire Motorsports bought Live Fast Motorsports’ charter, and they are using that charter to align with Trackhouse on the #71 car. Similar to the #97 Kaulig Racing Xfinity Series car, this will largely function as a Trackhouse satellite team. However, Spire Motorsports owns the charter, so, Trackhouse cannot use this charter to open a third team in 2025.

Spire is in a similar situation to Kaulig Racing. Spire is a newer and growing team, but, they are not a key partner Chevy team. They are now aligned with one in Trackhouse, and it allows Trackhouse to expand in the Cup Series without starting a new team. This alliance may also expand into the lower series.

The Driver Lineup

Now, let’s break down the drivers. Trackhouse has five drivers under contract for 2024 who will race across multiple different levels of motorsports. We will go from the lowest level to the highest level with teams in parentheses.

Connor Zilisch: CARS Tour, Trans AM, IMSA (Era), ARCA, Trucks, Xfinity (Rest of Teams TBD)

Trackhouse signed teenager Connor Zilisch on January 11th to a multi-year development deal. This deal includes racing in the CARS Tour, Trans AM, IMSA, ARCA, Trucks, and Xfinity. He is even slated to start in the prestigious Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona IMSA race in the LMP2 category for Era Motorsport to compete against top drivers like Pato O’Ward, Scott McLaughlin, Felix Rosenqvist, and Felipe Massa amongst others.

Zilisch has previous connections with teams like Rackley W.A.R. and Pinnacle Racing Group in the CARS Tour and ARCA, but, who could he race for in the Truck and Xfinity Series? Trackhouse is aligned with Spire Motorsports, who has an All-Star #51 Truck in the Truck Series, so, that’s an easy candidate. Spire may bring in a part-time Xfinity car as well like they did in 2023, so, that may be Zilisch’s ticket. However, nothing has been announced yet.

Shane Van Gisbergen: ARCA (Pinnacle Racing Group), Xfinity (Kaulig), and Cup (TBD)

SVG stole the headlines by winning the Chicago Street Race in July of 2023. He signed a development deal with Trackhouse that has him competing full-time in the Xfinity Series with Kaulig Racing and part-time in the Cup Series. He will also make one ARCA start at Daytona with Pinnacle Racing Group, but, that is only to fulfill NASCAR requirements to start in the Xfinity Series race that weekend.

Now, SVG’s Xfinity Series ride is pretty straightforward as he will team up with A.J. Allmendinger and Josh Williams at Kaulig Racing, but the Cup Series ride is murky. Trackhouse could open a third car, but, Kaulig Racing may have some open spots on their #16 chartered Cup Series entry. This could work for SVG as he would be guaranteed a starting spot, but, Trackhouse would likely be faster equipment.

Zane Smith: Cup (Spire)

Zane Smith will drive the #71 car for Spire Motorsports in 2024 with an alliance from Trackhouse. Essentially, Spire owns the car and the charter for the team, but, Trackhouse has the rights to the driver and certain team members including spotter Josh Williams. Smith signed a multi-year deal with Trackhouse.

With Smith under contract beyond 2024, if Trackhouse expands or moves off of one of their current driver, they could easily bring Smith in-house. Based on Justin Marks’ comments after signing Smith, the goal seems to be expanding to three cars in 2025. Smith may be the first driver to jump.

Ross Chastain and Daniel Suarez: Cup (Trackhouse)

These two drivers are the most straightforward as they will both race for Trackhouse in the Cup Series in 2024. Both drivers signed multi-year contract extensions with Trackhouse in 2023, so, they will likely stay with the team at least through 2025.

Chastain has won 4 races in two years, and he has major sponsorship on-board from Busch Beer. He will likely stay at Trackhouse for a long time, but Suarez is another story as he struggled in 2023. With so many drivers waiting in the wings, will Suarez have to move on if his results do not improve?

This is a breakdown of all of the drivers racing for Trackhouse in 2024. It’s an exciting lineup with plenty of excitement for the future.

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Joshua Lipowski

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