23XI Racing experienced highs and lows throughout their first NASCAR Cup Series season, but they can now breathe a sigh of relief.
23XI Racing saw quite a few ups and downs throughout the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season, as expected when considering the growing pains experienced by a new team at the highest form of professional stock car racing.
The Charlotte, North Carolina-based team came into the year with plenty of buzz from the offseason, thanks to the ownership duo of Joe Gibbs Racing driver Denny Hamlin and NBA Hall of Famer Michael Jordan. The team elected to sign Bubba Wallace as the driver of the #23 Toyota.
Overall, it was an inconsistent season for the team. To start the year, Jordan discussed how he “doesn’t sign checks for losers”. While that statement turned out to be true, it took until early October for it to come to fruition when Wallace won a rain-shortened race at Talladega Superspeedway.
There was inconsistency throughout the season on the track as it pertained to both speed and results, and the team even changed crew chiefs for Wallace before the end of the year.
Off the track, the team were originally reported to have to secured a charter for the second entry that they had announced for 2022 for Kurt Busch, but that deal ultimately fell through.
But now, 23XI Racing seem to have their missing piece fully into place.
Hamlin had previously said that if a deal for a second charter didn’t come through, they would still field the #45 Toyota for Busch throughout the entire 36-race season.
But now Hamlin doesn’t even have to worry about that predicament.
Sports Business Journal‘s Adam Stern has reported that 23XI Racing are expected to obtain their second charter from the now defunct StarCom Racing, despite recent rumors that this charter would be sold to Spire Motorsports.
With a chartered car, Busch essentially has a “ticket” into every race next season, without having to qualify to secure a spot. On talent alone, there certainly wouldn’t have been cause for concern regarding the #45 Toyota being in the lineup each week, but this investment is exactly what 23XI Racing could use heading into their first year as a two-car team and second year overall.