Close this search box.
Close this search box.

With Connor Zilisch at JRM, Where Do the Other Trackhouse Drivers Go?

Let us know what you think

Join the conversation on socials

What’s Happening?

Trackhouse is slowly putting its complicated driver jigsaw puzzle together for 2025. Ross Chastain and Daniel Suarez are expected to be back, along with Connor Zilisch reportedly heading to JRM. This leaves Shane Van Gisbergen and Zane Smith. Where do they end up in 2025?

  • Zane Smith and SVG are uncertain about where they will go next year. Trackhouse would like to bring both drivers in-house. However, the space is limited.
  • Trackhouse has only two teams and likely only one charter available to purchase. Therefore, someone has to end up somewhere else, and that’s where Trackhouse’s alliances come in.
  • Fans are looking towards this team as the next biggest shoe to drop in Silly Season. The question is who ends up where.

Who Ends Up at Trackhouse?

Coming into this year, the ideal scenario was that Trackhouse would find a way to purchase two charters to bring both Smith and SVG into the fold full-time in 2025. When Stewart-Haas Racing announced its shutdown, it became a golden opportunity for Trackhouse to get those two charters to expand to a four-car team. Unfortunately, issues arose.

In the spring, Jordan Bianchi of The Athletic reported that NASCAR is considering limiting teams to only three charters. Trackhouse is widely expected to purchase one of SHR’s four charters, with one each going to Front Row Motorsports and 23XI Racing, while Gene Haas retains the fourth to run a single-car team.

This means only one driver can fill the vacancy at Trackhouse in 2025. Will they pick SVG or Zane Smith?

SVG has already won one Cup Series race for Trackhouse and two Xfinity Series road course races for Kaulig Racing. The ovals have been a learning curve, but he generally gets better as the race goes on. He has an average finish of 17.1 on ovals, improving to 15.5 when taking out the engine failure at Las Vegas. In the Cup Series, however, he struggled, finishing 28th at Talladega and Charlotte. SVG might be the safe option.

However, Smith needs a change of scenery and fast. In a brand new team at Spire Motorsports, he sits 34th in points, last among full-time drivers, and has only five top-20 finishes. Yes, he finished second at Nashville, but that was a fuel mileage race where he failed to score any stage points. Regardless, it would probably be unfair to cut Smith loose after only one year with a brand new team that’s not even the organization he’s under-contract with.

Still, Trackhouse needs to make a decision. Bob Pockrass reports that SVG is most likely to move into that third Trackhouse seat. We’ll see if things change.

What About the Other Driver?

For the second driver, be that SVG or Smith, we have to look at the teams Trackhouse is aligned with. Kaulig Racing currently houses SVG in the Xfinity Series, and Team President Chris Rice said in the spring that Kaulig “Will be close with Trackhouse Racing for a while.” They also have some open seats in 2025 that need funding.

Could Smith or SVG race for Kaulig in 2025, either on the Cup or Xfinity side? While the Cup Series team has struggled, the Xfinity Series program can and still does consistently compete for wins.

It could serve SVG some to race in the Xfinity Series to gain more oval experience, and Smith could benefit from the better equipment. However, Cup is not out of the picture either.

Maybe Trackhouse could bump Smith down to the Truck Series, where he has succeeded. Maybe the Spire alliance will be useful, and Smith will race a year down there to rebuild his confidence. Maybe he goes to Niece Motorsports (For whom Trackhouse driver Ross Chastain has raced) or McAnally-Hilgemann Racing (Where Smith competed four times this season).

Either way, Trackhouse needs to look elsewhere, and JRM may not have more spots available after signing Zilisch. It’s going to be interesting to see who ends up where.

What do you think about all this? Let us know on Discord or X what your take is, and don’t forget you can also follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and even YouTube.

Let us know what you think

Join the conversation on socials

Share this:

Picture of Joshua Lipowski

Joshua Lipowski

All Posts