The 2021 NASCAR Cup Series features a variety of new teams. One of such teams, Trackhouse Racing, will be supported by an especially prominent new co-owner. On Friday, the team announced that decorated musician Pitbull has become a co-owner alongside founder Justin Marks. Trackhouse will debut in February’s Daytona 500 with Daniel Suárez driving the #99 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE.
“I’ve been a fan of the NASCAR story since the movie Days of Thunder,” Pitbull stated. “As soon as I met Justin, (team president) Ty Norris and Daniel, we were on the same page. They welcomed me aboard, and now we’re going to show the world NASCAR is not only a sport but it’s a culture. This is an amazing way to celebrate my 40th birthday, so Get Ready! Dale! (Dah-lay)!”
Armando Christian Pérez, better known by his stage name Pitbull, has received numerous accolades for his music, including the Grammy Award in 2016 and multiple Latin Music Awards. His song “I Believe That We Will Win” was used as NBC’s intro for the 2020 Cup Series season finale. The single “Get Ready” features Blake Shelton, who performed the NASCAR on NBC intro music from 2015 to 2017.
Suárez, the Mexican-born 2016 Xfinity Series champion, seems like a perfect fit for the Cuban-American Pitbull as fellow Latinos. Incidentally, Trackhouse will not be Pitbull’s first foray into NASCAR; in 2014, his Voli Vodka brand sponsored another Mexican Xfinity Series driver in Carlos Contreras on a limited basis.
Trackhouse, created by former driver Marks, intends to not only race on the Cup circuit but also promote STEM education. In 2013, Pitbull founded Sports Leadership Arts and Management (SLAM!), a sports-centered charter school with various campuses nationwide that intends to support education in underprivileged areas. With the rapper joining the team, Trackhouse also hopes to create a racing-themed STEM curriculum for SLAM! 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,” said Marks.
“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 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. 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.”
Pitbull is not the only high-profile new team owner in NASCAR, let alone the only Bull. In the Toyota camp, 23XI Racing is co-owned by Chicago Bulls great Michael Jordan. 23XI driver Bubba Wallace, who was a Drive for Diversity member like Suárez, tweeted after the announcement, “Welcome to the sport @pitbull. Pretty dope!”