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- American racing driver
Trackhouse Racing has absorbed most former Chip Ganassi Racing employees.
The NASCAR team estimated that 115 of its 130 employees formerly worked at CGR, which closed its NASCAR operations after a sale to Trackhouse owner Justin Marks.
The acquisition was announced in late June, while the official opening of Trackhouse’s rebranded race shop in Concord took place last week as teams prepare for the 2022 NASCAR season.
Marks previously told The Observer that he expected Trackhouse to employ more than 100 former Ganassi employees; the latest estimate is confirmation that many of those individuals have moved to the expanding team, which will field two Cup cars next season.
“I think the change that you’ll see at Trackhouse is consistent with what every other team is going through,” Marks said in October about staffing through the industry’s move to the Next Gen car.
“But we’re trying to win races and to win races you need lots of good people.”
Driver Daniel Suárez will continue to drive the No. 99 Chevrolet with Travis Mack as his crew chief. Phil Surgen, former No. 42 crew chief, will continue to work with driver Ross Chastain at Trackhouse next season. The duo put together three top-five finishes and eight top 10s for CGR last year and will run the No. 1 Chevy for Trackhouse in ‘22.
Crew lineups have not been finalized, but team members recently moved into their rebranded shop. Trackhouse relocated from Richard Childress Racing’s campus in Welcome, N.C., to Ganassi’s 22-acre campus after the 2021 season. Hendrick Automotive Group purchased that property near the Concord-Padgett Regional Airport for $10.2 million in early September, and Trackhouse is operating there through a landlord-lessee relationship with Hendrick.
Along with Marks, international music icon Pitbull is a co-owner of Trackhouse Racing. He sent a video message for employees to celebrate the shop unveiling last Monday.
“Short steps, long vision,” said Pitbull, whose real name is Armando Christian Pérez, in his video message. “That’s what the Trackhouse team is all about.”
Trackhouse put together one top-five finish and four top 10s with Suárez as the team’s sole driver during the organization’s debut season in 2021. The team was founded with a mission to diversify the NASCAR industry and connect especially with its Hispanic fanbase.
Both Suárez and Chastain tested the Next Gen car at the Charlotte oval earlier this month and are set to compete in the non-points Clash event at the Los Angeles Coliseum on Feb. 6 ahead of the 2022 season-opening Daytona 500.