We don’t do that much in this space with current-day NASCAR, mainly because other outlets exist that focus on it specifically. But there’s no way we were passing this up. In the week that NASCAR and Formula 1 constitute two of Memorial Day weekend’s three great motorsports happenings, the upstart NASCAR team Trackhouse Racing, announced a new plan called PROJECT91 to attract drivers from other motorsport disciplines to today’s stock cars, and named its first driver last week, as well. The first PROJECT91 driver will be 2007 F1 world champion Kimi Raikkonen, who will drive a third Trackhouse entry in his NASCAR Cup series debut at the August 21st stop on the road course at Watkins Glen.
Trackhouse Racing is a subsidiary of Trackhouse Entertainment Group, owned by former IMSA and NASCAR driver Justin Marks and Grammy-winning rapper Pitbull. It came to NASCAR by buying the former stock car assets of Chip Ganassi Racing, and fields full-time rides for Ross Chastain and Daniel Suarez. The team is on a roll, with Chastain notching multiple Cup wins this year. PROJECT91 closely follows the announcement by Hendrick Motorsports that it will field a Cup-spec Chevrolet Camaro as a special entry at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2023. With its fully independent suspension, rack-and-pinion power steering, sequential gearbox and ultra-low-profile wheel and tire combination, the Next Gen car now raced in NASCAR Cup more closely parallels current global racing technology than anything NASCAR’s run in the past. None of these internationalist developments since its adoption are coincidental, and that’s a good thing in our book.