23XI Racing will be navigating the waters as a multi-car organization in the NASCAR Cup Series for the first time in 2022, with founding driver Bubba Wallace, as well as the 2004 NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Champion Kurt Busch piloting the No. 45 Toyota Camry.
As part of the team’s expansion, additional personnel has been hired ahead of next season in various different roles, many of which were already working in the NASCAR Cup Series garage with other teams.
Billy Scott – a veteran Cup Series crew chief — will join 23XI Racing as crew chief of Kurt Busch’s No. 45 Toyota Camry, while also taking on the position of Senior Race Engineer. The pair already have an existing relationship, after working together for the full season at Stewart-Haas Racing in 2018.
Most recently, Scott worked as the Head of Race Engineering for Richard Childress Racing, while also taking up a two-race role as crew chief of Austin Dillon’s Our Motorsports entry in the Xfinity Series this season.
“The chemistry Billy and I had together a few years back at SHR (Stewart Haas Racing) was strong,” Busch said in a team release. “We raced smart and built solid consistency with each other. That showed with the results and the fun the team had together. Winning races is what it’s all about and our past experiences will help build the future at 23XI.”
Bootie Barker – a veteran of over 450 NASCAR Cup Series races — will remain crew chief of Bubba Wallace’s No. 23 Toyota Camry in 2022, while continuing his role as Senior Setup Engineer. Barker, alongside Wallace and 23XI Racing, collected their first career victory last fall at Talladega.
“Bootie and I clicked from the start,” said Wallace. “He’s been a great addition to the No. 23 team and in just the short time he’s been the crew chief, he’s helped me on and off the track to be better every time I get in the car. To get the win together at Talladega, the first win for both of us, was really special. I’m excited to continue to build this team with Bootie and to see what we can accomplish together next season. I’m pumped to get the year started at the LA Coliseum and then head to Daytona for the Daytona 500.”
23XI Racing has made an additional seven key hires ahead of the 2022 season, to ensure the transition from a single-car to a multi-car operation in the NASCAR Cup Series is seamless. Those hires include:
- David Bryant – Car Chief (No. 45) – From Chip Ganassi Racing
- Zach Marquardt – Car Chief (No. 23) – From Roush Fenway Racing
- Etienne Cliche – Race Engineer (No. 23) – Remains with 23XI Racing
- Julian Pena – Race Engineer (No. 45) – Remains with 23XI Racing
- Mike Lorusso – Director of Race Team Operations – From Joe Gibbs Racing
- Dave Rogers – Performance Director – From Joe Gibbs Racing
- Steve Wolfe – Assembly Manager – From Chip Ganassi Racing
“As we grow and move into our second year, it is important for us to continue building our competition team, and hiring the right people to take us to the next level,” said 23XI Racing President Steve Lauletta. “With Kurt coming on board to join Bubba, new partners joining us, and now hiring some of the best in the business, all of the pieces are falling into place and it makes all of us excited to get to the track and continue building on our first year.”
23XI Racing will kick the season off with the Busch Light Clash at the LA Coliseum on Sunday, February 6, 2022, followed by the Daytona 500 on Sunday, February 20, 2022.