Michael Jordan and Denny Hamlin's NASCAR Cup team named 23XI Racing

Nick DeGroot
·2 min read
Jordan, Hamlin's NASCAR team named 23XI Racing
Jordan, Hamlin's NASCAR team named 23XI Racing

Michael Jordan and Denny Hamlin's new NASCAR team will be known as 23XI Racing, and the team will field the No. 23 Toyota Camry with driver Bubba Wallace in 2021.

NBA legend Jordan and three-time Daytona 500 winner Hamlin combined their iconic numbers to create the team name, and social media channels for 23XI Racing were created Thursday.

23XI Racing had previously purchased Germain Racing's charter to secure a space for every race in next year's Cup Series field.

"Michael and I have a shared vision for this team, so it's exciting to see it reflected in the team name and on the race car with the iconic number 23 that Michael made famous," said Hamlin in a statement.

Hamlin will continue as a driver at Joe Gibbs Racing while taking on this new role as minority owner at 23XI Racing.

The move is not unprecedented with the late Dale Earnhardt being among the most notable cases, driving for Richard Childress Racing while operating Dale Earnhardt Inc.

The race team's official Twitter, which has already amassed over 10,000 followers, posted the following video.

Wallace is the only African-American driver at the Cup level and has spent the entirety of his NCS career with Richard Petty Motorsports, placing as high as second in the 2018 Daytona 500. Erik Jones will replace him at RPM next year.

The 27-year-old has also been a leading voice in the sport on racial injustice in the United States.

NASCAR has since taken concrete steps in their efforts to diversify its fan base, banning the Confederate flag and embracing the Black Lives Matter movement.

2021 will be Wallace's fourth full-time season as a Cup driver.

"Growing up in North Carolina, my parents would take my brothers, sisters and me to races, and I've been a NASCAR fan my whole life," said Jordan at the launch of his team earlier in the year.

"The opportunity to own my own racing team in partnership with my friend, Denny Hamlin, and to have Bubba Wallace driving for us, is very exciting for me.

"Historically, NASCAR has struggled with diversity and there have been few black owners.

"The timing seemed perfect as NASCAR is evolving and embracing social change more and more.

"In addition to the recent commitment and donations I have made to combat systemic racism, I see this as a chance to educate a new audience and open more opportunities for black people in racing."

Get unlimited access to the world’s best motorsport journalism with Autosport Plus