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“I Don’t Believe In That”- Billy Venturini Unsure of Hailie Deegan’s Xfinity Break as He Unmasks Reality Behind AM Racing Deal

Published 11/19/2023, 9:19 AM EST

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After only one full-time season with ThorSport Racing in the NASCAR Truck Series, Hailie Deegan is on her way to the Xfinity Series. The 22-year-old driver never managed to win a race in Trucks. And yet, she got the opportunity to go a division higher with AM Racing. While several people are excited about the career move, Deegan’s former boss, Billy Venturini isn’t too sure. He revealed his skepticism in an exclusive interview with EssentiallySports.

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Billy Venturini is the owner of Venturini Motorsports in the ARCA Menards Series. Hailie Deegan raced for the 47-year-old six times in the competition in 2019 but never won a race. As Deegan is all set to move to the Xfinity Series, some people believe that she is not yet ready to make the big move.

Billy Venturini critical of Hailie Deegan for “skipping the process”


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Hailie Deegan may be one of the most popular drivers in NASCAR today but her record isn’t that impressive. The 22-year-old driver has taken part in three full-time Truck Series seasons. But has never managed to finish in the top five. Her best result of sixth place in the competition came at Talladega and Texas in 2022 and 2023 respectively. Her lack of success in the competition is why Billy Venturini has his reservations.

“I think Hailie is a good driver, think she has the talent to drive race cars but you gotta be able to put complete races together and I think you need to do that at the 200-lap ARCA races, then the 250-mile Truck races, and then go to the 300-mile Xfinity races but you have to have success at each level, in my opinion, before you move up,” the owner of Venturini Motorsports said in an exclusive interview with EssentiallySports.


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Billy Venturini acknowledged that some drivers are forced to make the move up the higher divisions without tasting success in the lower ones for financial reasons. However, the 47-year-old doesn’t believe that Hailie Deegan is someone who would make such a desperate move. For him, though, it is success at each level that matters.

“If you’re not contending for wins or winning races, I don’t believe in that. Some do it because they don’t have money to continue racing at the lower level, it’s a little bit more of a desperation move and you can almost understand that because they don’t really have choices but when they have choices, I feel like they’re just skipping the process and it ends up not being good,” Venturini added.

Hailie Deegan’s move to the Xfinity Series might not be something that Billy Venturini is a fan of. However, the motor racing veteran believes that the decision might not have entirely been hers either.

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Motorsports veteran alludes to former Truck Series star’s hands being tied

Billy Venturini has been a part of motorsports for a long time now. The veteran team owner knows the ins and outs of the sport. He explained how sponsors and entities investing in a driver have a huge say in their career moves, which is what could have happened with Hailie Deegan.

“She probably doesn’t have choices. When someone else is pushing your career, you can’t tell them no. If the people funding her career want her to go Xfinity racing, she is going to Xfinity racing. I don’t know if she would say she chose to do that, or maybe she did, I’m a firm believer of you need to win at the level you’re at and then move up,” Venturini opined.


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Hailie Deegan has proven that she is a talented race car driver but she is yet to operate on that high level. Will Billy Venturini’s skepticism that he revealed in the exclusive interview with EssentiallySports prove right? Let us know your thoughts.

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Written by:

Nilavro Ghosh


One take at a time

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Edited by:

Abhishek Ramesh