23XI Racing Recruits Kurt Busch to Partner Bubba Wallace in 2022

Published 08/28/2021, 4:49 AM EDT
LOUDON, NH – JULY 20: Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Monster Energy/Haas Automation Ford, poses with the Cape Cod Cafe Pizza Pole Award after posting the fastest lap during qualifying for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, New Hampshire. (Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)


Another piece of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series puzzle has fallen in place. This time around, Kurt Busch has been recruited to the 23XI Racing team ranks. The 2004 Cup Series champion will partner Bubba Wallace in the new season as the Michael Jordan and Denny hamlin-owned outfit expands to a second car. It is also worth mentioning that Busch will compete in the #45 car, which has a fair amount of history in NASCAR.

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Truthfully, speaking, many expected Kurt Busch to sign above the dotted line. This is because, he and team co-owner Denny Hamlin often dodged speculations about a potential deal. Now, the cat is finally out of the bag, so the two can break their silence on the matter and Wallace can get a teammate.

It is also worth noting that Monster Energy will follow him from Chip Ganassi Racing, which is on it’s way out of the sport after a purchase by Trackhouse Racing. Furthermore, Kurt Busch has no intentions to retire because he loves to race. Last month, Busch entered the playoffs for the ninth consecutive season after winning the Cup Series race at Atlanta.

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What did Kurt Busch say?

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The 43-year-old said, “I just love racing cars, and I want to race that Next Gen car. That’s why I’m trying to stick around. Will you guys have me next year if I stick around? I cannot begin to express my gratitude for this opportunity. Racing to win is what I live for. Helping to continue developing a new team, alongside Michael Jordan, Denny Hamlin, and Toyota is exactly what I want to be part of.”

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – SEPTEMBER 27: Kurt Busch, driver of the #1 Monster Energy Chevrolet, celebrates after winning the NASCAR Cup Series South Point 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Throughout the course of his career, Busch has driven for multiple racing teams with varying degrees of success. With Roush Fenway Racing, he won his one and only Cup Series title. Later on, he had stints at Team Penske, Phoenix Racing, Furniture Row Racing, Stewart-Haas Racing and Chip Ganassi Racing; 23XI Racing will soon be the latest team to acquire his services.

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Interestingly, there are whispers about a second charter, as they are in talks with Front Row Motorsports. The plan is to buy one charter or enter a partnership to include two extra charters. Obviously, one of the charters will go to Busch, while the potential second charter could be leased out. For now, Kurt Busch will concentrate on seeing out his Chip Ganassi contract and the remainder of the 2021 season.

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Dhruv George

11980 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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