The Daytona 500 will officially kick off the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season on Feb. 14, putting new teams on display. Michael Jordan's 23XI Racing will draw some attention, as will a new team co-owned by a music superstar. Pitbull will make his mark on stock car racing with Trackhouse Racing Team.
The new Cup Series team announced that Pitbull was joining its ownership group with a press release on Friday, the performer's 40th birthday. He will join team founder and co-owner Justin Marks while striving to find success in a stacked field of competitors. Daniel Suarez, who previously drove for Gaunt Brothers Racing in 2020, will get behind the wheel of the No. 99 Chevrolet Camaro. He competed in 35 of the 36 races in 2020, ending the season with no top-10 finishes.
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"As soon as I met Justin, [team president] Ty Norris and Daniel, we were on the same page" Pitbull said in a press release. "They welcomed me aboard, and now we’re going to show the world NASCAR is not only a sport but it’s a culture." Trackhouse Racing Team also said that Marks and Pitbull will collaborate on Trackhouse’s philanthropic efforts. These endeavors include "NASCAR-themed STEM education initiatives within inner-city charter schools."
"From day one of creating Trackhouse Racing, I wanted our team to be a platform for purpose, to transcend the sport and positively impact all races on and off the track," Marks said in the press release. "I am proud that in just a few months we are here announcing a partnership with one of the most influential and recognized artists in the world. Within the first 10 minutes of our first meeting, it was clear Armando [Pérez] and I share a vision and passion for impacting the lives of the underrepresented.
"We are creating and compelling a movement of positivity and possibility, using the platform and excitement of sports and music," Marks continued. "Through NASCAR and our partnership with Pitbull, we are going to have the attention of a global demographic that is ready to be inspired into action for themselves, their families and their future."
As a smaller team, there will be questions about whether Trackhouse Racing will find success during its first season. Fans will not have the a definitive answer until later in the season, but they will get their first glimpse at the new No. 99 Chevrolet Camaro on Feb. 14.