Saturday, September 30, 2023

NASCAR’s ‘Hail Melon’ Ban Inspires Justin Marks, Trackhouse Racing to Preserve Ross Chastain’s Martinsville Car

Ross Chastain Trackhouse Racing Justin Marks Hail Melon NASCAR Cup Series Martinsville Speedway
With Tuesday’s announcement that NASCAR would ban the “Hail Melon” move from all tracks, Justin Marks, co-owner of NASCAR Cup Series team Trackhouse Racing, has been inspired to preserve Ross Chastain’s car from Martinsville Speedway in its original condition, for fans to view. (Photo by Tim Parks/HHP for Chevy Racing)

On Tuesday, in the sanctioning body’s annual competition briefing, NASCAR officially announced that the ‘Hail Melon’ – the name assigned to Ross Chastain’s insane last-lap wall-riding move at Martinsville Speedway – will be completely banned, at all tracks.

The last-ditch move, which ultimately advanced Chastain into the Championship 4, was named the No. 1 play on SportsCenter the night of the race, and generated enormous global buzz surrounding the sport, producing over 100 million video views in two days.

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In order to properly honor Chastain’s move, which will likely be remembered for decades as one of the sport’s most insane – and clutch – moves EVER, Justin Marks and Trackhouse Racing have elected to preserve the car, in the state it returned from Martinsville, Virginia.

Justin Marks – founder and co-owner of Trackhouse Racing – made the official announcement on Wednesday, via social media, with a statement that reads as follows:

“So, the good news is these cars are strong. Because of that, the Martinsville ‘wall car’ came back from the race with 90% of its parts reusable, which means, keeping that car exactly as it came off the track as a show car would cost Trackhouse hundreds of thousands of dollars.”

“We’ve gone back and forth on what to do, but given the new ruling NASCAR made [January 31], we’ve decided to preserve the car as best as possible,” Marks continued. “Ross’ move at Martinsville was a historic moment and should be preserved, for the fans for years to come in physical form. This sport isn’t just about the balance sheet, it’s about passions, moments, and people.”

In just two seasons of being a NASCAR Cup Series owner, Marks, who co-owns Trackhouse Racing with global superstar Pitbull, has continued to actively disrupt the ownership landscape at NASCAR’s top-level, in several new and innovative ways.

With the upcoming season, Marks will enter his third season as an owner in the NASCAR Cup Series, as well as his second year as an owner of a multi-car organization. Last season, Trackhouse Racing placed both drivers – Ross Chastain and Daniel Suarez – inside the top-10 in points.

Joseph Srigley
Joseph Srigley
University of Windsor | Business Administration - Supply Chain & Data Analytics Editor at

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