Trackhouse Racing has been making some big moves in the last couple of weeks, as they have signed Shane van Gisbergen (SVG) to a developmental contract that will see him race across all three series, but they had some even bigger news that they shared this week.
Trackhouse has now tabbed Zane Smith, the 2022 Truck Series Champion, for a Cup ride in 2024.
— NASCAR (@NASCAR) September 16, 2023
These moves only add to a powerful line-up with Ross Chastain and Daniel Suarez at Trackhouse. They have also made noise elsewhere in the NASCAR garage, as Denny Hamlin, who is a co-owner of 23XI Racing with NBA legend Michael Jordan, took note.
Hamlin discussed the big moves by Trackhouse on a new episode of "Actions Detrimental With Denny Hamlin." He was impressed by what Trackhouse has done and thinks it is only going to make that team better.
"This is a great sign for Trackhouse," Hamlin said. "... Zane is certainly deserving of this opportunity. Every time he's had the opportunity to compete in Cup, he's done a great job. Got great results. This is great forward thinking by Trackhouse and Justin (Marks) for his team to look towards the future."
Smith will run a full-time season in the Cup Series in 2024 with Spire Motorsports, who just purchased a third charter. It also puts Spire in a great place with a working relationship with Trackhouse Racing.
As for what SVG's future looks like, Hamlin is a little skeptical about how it will all work out for the New Zealander. Hamlin calls that signing more of an "experiment" but is excited to see how SVG will progress at the ovals.
"I don't think there's any secret that the SVG thing is more an experiment than anything," Hamlin said. "I really look forward to SVG running in multiple series next year... Think he's a great dude and tremendous talent, obviously. But that experiment could take some time. Would he be ready to run Cup full-time in ovals in a year? No way. Just no way. I mean, these guys are just too good, but you wanna see him have a steady progression of it. So if Trackhouse can keep him under contract for a few years, maybe you see the progression that you like after a year or two, and then you move him up to Cup if the opportunity presents itself."
It's clear Trackhouse has confidence in both Smith and SVG and will be putting them in a position to succeed for years to come.
Want More Sports News?
Get the biggest and best sports news sent directly to your inbox.