After months of speculation, we finally got at least a piece of what the driving lineup will look like for Spire Motorsports’ No. 77 team. Tuesday, the team announced that they have added Quin Houff to drive the car in, “roughly half,” of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule.
According to the release, Houff will make his Cup Series debut at ISM Raceway in March.
“I’m so excited to be able to make my Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series debut at ISM Raceway in March,” Houff said. “I cannot thank Jeff Dickerson and T.J. Puchyr from Spire Motorsports enough for the opportunity to make my dream a reality. There are thousands of drivers who make racing on Sundays their goal. To be one of the few drivers who get to realize that goal is a true blessing. It’s humbling for me to compete at the pinnacle of the sport, but it’s also a testament to all those who stood behind me to this point and those who will continue to do so in the future.”
It’s an interesting choice for a young start-up race team to go with a generally unproven rookie to lead the way, but Spire Motorsports is fired up to see Houff behind the wheel of their cars.
“We’re eager to get to Phoenix and have Quin in the car for the first of his races with us this season,” said Dickerson, the team’s co-owner. “Quin was very good at finishing races and keeping his equipment intact. That’s one of the most important things to do in order to learn and grow.”
Spire Motorsports purchased the charter that was held by Furniture Row Racing for their No. 78 team this off-season. Due to lack of funding, the 2017 Cup Series championship team was forced to close their doors.
Before Houff gets behind the wheel, the No. 77 team will actually run car No. 40 in the season-opening Daytona 500 in a partnership with Chip Ganassi Racing. Jamie McMurray will run in that car, before things switch over to the No. 77 for the next event.
Houff is a 21-year-old driver who has competed in 10 NASCAR Xfinity Series events over the last two seasons. In those 10 starts, Houff had a best finish of 12th at Iowa in 2017.
Before coming to NASCAR, Houff was a standout on the CARS Late Model tour. Houff scored two wins in 19-career starts in that series before trying his hand at ARCA and NASCAR.
No word on who will be sharing driving duties with Houff in 2019.
Toby is the Founder, Editor and go-to man for TobyChristie.com. He is the co-host of The Final Lap Weekly Podcast. Additionally, Toby is a NMPA (National Motorsports Press Association) award winning writer, and has followed the sport as a fan since 1993.