It’s official, Kurt Busch has found his driving home for the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season, as the 43-year old will move to a second 23XI Racing entry next season, which will sport the No. 45. 23XI Racing made the announcement on Friday evening.
We got our guy.
— 23XI Racing (@23XIRacing) August 27, 2021
The No. 45 has ties to Michael Jordan, 23XI Racing’s co-owner, as that was his high school baseball number and the number he used during his attempted professional baseball career. The number was also what Jordan carried on his back during his initial return to the NBA from his first retirement in 1995.
Busch will bring Monster Energy with him as the primary sponsor for the effort.
This announcement comes a month and a half after Busch scored a stirring win at Atlanta Motor Speedway in July to lock himself into the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs. Overall, he has scored four top-fives and nine top 10s through the opening 25 races of the year.
The future of Busch was in question when his current team, Chip Ganassi Racing, announced on June 30th that they had sold their NASCAR Cup Series operation to Trackhouse Racing for the 2022 season.
Three weeks ago, Ross Chastain was announced to be moving into the No. 1 car for 2022 alongside Daniel Suarez in the No. 99 car at Trackhouse. This meant Busch was on the ropes and looking for a new ride.
A week ago, while at an event at the South Carolina Governor’s Mansion, Busch admitted that once his racing career was over that he’s like to go into broadcasting, but that he had two offers to drive for the 2022 season.
Obviously, one of those two offers was joining Bubba Wallace at 23XI Racing.
The Las Vegas-native, who won the 2004 NASCAR Cup Series championship, has 33-career NASCAR Cup Series wins, and has won at least one race in each of the last eight seasons. Busch has also made the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs in each of the last nine seasons, including this year.
To see how the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season is shaping up, visit TobyChristie.com’s 2022 NASCAR Cup Series Driver / Team Chart.
Toby is the Founder, Editor and go-to man for TobyChristie.com. He is also the co-host of The Final Lap Weekly Podcast. Additionally, Toby is a NMPA (National Motorsports Press Association) award winning writer, and has followed NASCAR as a fan since 1993.