Michael Jordan’s NASCAR Team: Name, Driver, Net Worth, Sponsors, and All That We Know

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January 25, 2021 4:00 pm

With the February 14 date set for the NASCAR season-opening Daytona 500, it also marks the start of a new chapter in the sport. A new team, under the ownership of NBA legend Michael Jordan and NASCAR Cup Series star Denny Hamlin, runs its first official race, with driver Bubba Wallace behind the wheel.

Back in September, when Jordan and Hamlin announced the team’s formation, there was a great buzz around the NASCAR entry of one of the greatest sportspersons ever.

Jordan soon made his intentions very clear with the new team, stating that he wants to create a winning mentality within Wallace and the entire team.

As the team’s debut is just a few days away, here is all we know about Jordan’s NASCAR team.

Name of the team and how it was formed

The new team is named 23XI Racing. As many Jordan and NBA fans would have figured out, the 23 in the title stands for the basketball legend’s no. 23 shirt that he wore throughout his career, and is now synonymous with him.

DATE: 10/20/01 PHOTO BY : JOEL RICHARDSON DIG MICHAEL JORDAN AND THE WIZARDS HOST NEW JERSEY NETS (Photo by The The Washington Post via Getty Images)

XI, on the other hand, is another way of writing the number ’11,’ that NASCAR fans know is associated with co-owner Hamlin. As Hamlin still runs the no. 11 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing, he did not want to use the number in its traditional style in the new team’s title.

Jordan and Hamlin purchased the charter of former Cup Series team, Germain Racing, allowing them to become a full-time outfit.

Who are the other owners along with Michael Jordan?

For now, the two owners of the team are Jordan and Hamlin, and the NBA great is the majority partner. While it is not impossible that someone joins the ownership scene in the time to come, it is highly unlikely.

BRISTOL, TN – APRIL 06: Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Freight Toyota, prepares to drive during practice for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

How much is the new team worth?

As per reports, Jordan’s new NASCAR team is worth over $150 million.

Who is Bubba Wallace, the driver of Michael Jordan’s team?

Bubba Wallace is one of the rising stars of the sport. Wallace is yet to win a NASCAR Cup Series race, but he is expected to win sooner than later with the equipment he receives at 23XI Racing.

Until the 2020 season, Wallace drove the No. 43 car for NASCAR legend Richard Petty’s team – Richard Petty Motorsports and was termed as an ‘overachiever’ at the team.

DAYTONA BEACH, FL – JULY 05: Bubba Wallace, driver of the #43 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet, stands by his car during practice for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 5, 2018 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Mike Wheeler will be Wallace’s and the No. 23 team’s Crew Chief in 2021.

Ford, Chevrolet, or Toyota: Who is the manufacturer partner of the team?

23XI Racing has roped in Toyota to prepare Wallace’s cars. Their association with Toyota Racing development sees the manufacturer build engines for the team. They will also provide technical assistance.

Additionally, Jordan and Hamlin have also tied up with leading NASCAR outfit Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR), the team Hamlin drives for. JGR will provide chassis support and other services to 23XI Racing.

Paint Scheme of the no. 23 car for the 2021 NASCAR season

The No. 23 Toyota Camry will be a red and white car, and Wallace will sport a red firesuit in 2021.

Sponsors that back Michael Jordan, Hamlin, and Wallace at 23XI Racing

The team has five major sponsors, or ‘founding partners’ that will lend their support to the team for the 2021 season. The sponsors are – McDonald’s, DoorDash, Columbia Sportswear, Dr. Pepper, and Root Insurance.

What does Michael Jordan expect from the new team?

Recently, Wallace revealed what Jordan said to him the very first time they spoke after the team’s announcement. Jordan clearly expressed that he expects Wallace to contend for wins and does not want the team to run at the back.

“Someone goes like, ‘Hey, there’s no running in the back if we’re doing this thing’. I’m like, whoa it’s MJ! I thought that was pretty cool,” Wallace said.

Not just for Wallace, but Jordan’s involvement is a big deal for NASCAR itself. There is no doubt that the move will help attract many new fans to the sport, and if the team is successful on the race track, the deal becomes a lot sweeter for everyone involved.

READ MORE – NASCAR Star Bubba Wallace Reveals How Michael Jordan’s ‘The Last Dance’ Changed His Mentality

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Aayush Majumdar

Aayush Majumdar is a NASCAR and tennis author at EssentiallySports. He is an avid follower of both the sports as well as many other. He has been covering sports events and writing on sports since 2017. His experience includes prior work as a sports reporter at a leading English daily in India. Aayush has also worked with leading digital platform Hotstar as a sports content contributor. He is a bronze medalist Sports Management Graduate. When he is not writing on sports, he is still watching them with utmost passion and is a big follower of Manchester United and Rafael Nadal.

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