Trackhouse Entertainment Group announced Wednesday the formation of a new NASCAR Cup Series team that will make its on-track debut at the 2021 Daytona 500.
Piloting the No. 99 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE will be 2016 NASCAR Xfinity Series champion and NASCAR Cup Series veteran Daniel Suárez. The Trackhouse Racing Team has entered into an embedded operational alliance with Richard Childress Racing that enables Trackhouse to utilize the technology, intellectual property, human capital and engineering developed over decades of championship-caliber competition. Trackhouse will be powered by ECR Engines, which recently announced a merged research and development partnership with Chevrolet powerhouse Hendrick Motorsports.
“The formation of a top-level NASCAR Cup Series team has been a dream of mine for a long time,” said Justin Marks, founder and owner of Trackhouse Entertainment Group. “A lot of hard work has transpired to get us to this point and I don’t think we could’ve ended up with better partners in RCR and Chevrolet and with a more passionate and committed driver than Daniel Suárez. Daniel’s drive and hunger to get to the top of this sport is palpable every time I am in his presence. We are building a team of winners and Daniel has delivered just about every time he’s sat in race winning equipment. It’s my job now to put a car underneath him that will carry him to the highest echelon of the sport.”
A native of Monterrey, Mexico, Suárez has proven his talent as a race-car driver after moving to the United States from Mexico to pursue a career in NASCAR. He has had a career highlighted by wins in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East, the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series and the NASCAR Xfinity Series. After securing rookie of the year in 2015, Suárez brought home the 2016 NASCAR Xfinity Series championship, becoming NASCAR’s first foreign-born national series champion. In 138 NASCAR Cup Series starts to date, Suárez has secured 32 top-10 finishes, eight top fives and two poles.
“I see in Trackhouse a great opportunity for me with a very strong group of people that share the same vision, commitment and goals that I have,” Suárez said. “Justin has been involved in the racing world for over 20 years and understands the ins and outs of the sport both as a driver and from the business side. I have learned a lot in the last few years and have been very fortunate to be a part of very good organizations. I have learned that this sport is about people, and I know we are going to work very hard to put together a talented team. Furthermore, getting the support from a strong manufacturer like Chevrolet will be a key to our success. My goal is simple, I want to win races.”
NASCAR industry veteran Ty Norris will serve as president of racing operations. Norris brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to Trackhouse after serving as executive vice president and general manager of both Dale Earnhardt Inc. and Michael Waltrip Racing. The Trackhouse Racing Team enters the sport during a transitional time in NASCAR’s history.
Central to the Trackhouse Racing Team is a commitment to making an impact on youth in America’s minority communities. Through a sizable contribution from the Marks Family Foundation, as well as support from the team’s partners, Trackhouse will design and execute an immersive STEM education initiative aimed at exposing America’s underrepresented youth to career opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Using the spectacle of NASCAR racing as a curriculum platform, Trackhouse will work with school districts, community organizations and youth groups to build the most impactful roadmap for those who are inspired to pursue STEM careers.
“I believe deeply in the direction NASCAR’s executive group is taking the sport,” Marks said. “There is a disruptive and courageous vision for the future taking place that is displayed by the incredible 2021 racing schedule and new ways of looking at a sustainable economic model culminating in the debut of the 2022 NextGen car that, in my opinion, will lay the groundwork for a dramatic value proposition for future owners, media partners, stakeholders and sponsors for decades to come. Everything Trackhouse will be doing in 2021 from a business development standpoint will be in the context of positioning ourselves to win races and championships as NASCAR embarks on a new chapter in 2022 and beyond.”
As Trackhouse builds a competitive framework for 2021, announcements regarding partners and key personnel will be forthcoming.