Suárez, Chastain, Pitbull & Trackhouse Racing Ready for Running of 66th Daytona 500

Trackhouse Racing

The 2024 Daytona 500 will take place on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. ET (FOX) at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. Leading up to the race will be Daytona Speedweeks with pole qualifying on Wednesday, Feb. 15 at 8:15 p.m. ET (FS1) and the twin Daytona Duel races on Thursday, Feb. 16, beginning at 7 p.m. ET (FS1).

FS1 will also carry Saturday’s 300-mile Xfinity Series race at 5 p.m. ET. 

How the Daytona 500 Works:

  • 36 teams are guaranteed starting spots for the 40-car Daytona 500, but the remaining four spots are determined by a comprehensive system that includes time trials and a qualifying race.
  • First, each driver takes to the track for two timed laps in single car qualifying Wednesday night. Only the front row for The Great American Race is decided after time trials.
  • For the rest of the field, their starting spots will be determined through Thursday night’s Duels at Daytona—a pair of 60-lap races with odd numbered starting positions being determined by Duel 1 and even numbered spots set in Duel 2.
  • The highest finishing open driver in each duel race will automatically make the field. For the final two spots, NASCAR will go back to time trials and award those final two spots based on the fastest qualifying speed amongst those not already locked in.

Race Notes

  • Busch Light ‘Iconic’: Ross Chastain will pilot the ‘Iconic’ Busch Light paint scheme for the 66th running of the Daytona 500. The No. 1 Chevrolet will carry the Busch Light ‘Iconic’ paint scheme in various races during the 2024 NASCAR Cup season. Additional details can be found in a press release HERE and visual assets of the paint scheme are available HERE
  • Busch Light Fan Sweepstakes: Busch Light is giving you a chance to win one of 500 prizes throughout the Daytona 500 including beer money, coolies made from Chastain’s race week tires and even a NASCAR Racing experience at Daytona with Chastain. Follow @BuschBeer on X and enter for a chance to win during every lap that ends in a 1 using #Buschtona500 #Sweepstakes.
  • Familiar Faces: Even though its the start of a new season, some things remain the same. Chastain is going into his third year with the same exact road and pit crew. The Busch Light driver has had the same support since the 2022 season when they finished second in the championship standings. 
  • Daytona 500 Stats: In 11 Cup Series starts in the season-opening race at Daytona, Chastain has led 39 laps and finished ninth in last year’s 500-mile event. He has a total of three top-10 Cup Series finishes at the 2.5-mile superspeedway. 
  • Meet Chastain: On Thursday at 2 p.m. ET, the Busch Light driver will sign autographs for the public at Walmart, 1590 Dunlawton Rd., Port Orange, FL 32127 and at Winn-Dixie located at 4025 S. Nova Rd., Port Orange, FL 32127 beginning at 3:15 p.m. ET. Wristbands required – distribution at 9 a.m. at each location on day of event. Chastain will also appear for a Q&A at the Daytona infield Hard Rock Fan Zone stage on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. ET. On Sunday at 10:25 a.m. ET he’ll appear at the Busch Light stage in the Daytona fan midway, followed by a Chevy stage appearance at 10:45 a.m.
  • NASCAR: Full Speed: Catch Chastain in the five episode docuseries NASCAR: Full Speed on Netflix. The series documented portions of Chastain’s 2023 season on and away from the track. All five episodes are currently available on Netflix.
  • Last Race: Chastain finished 15th in the Busch Light Clash at the Los Angeles Coliseum on Saturday, February 3. 
  • 2023 Season Recap: Chastain won at Nashville (Tenn.) Superspeedway in June and at the Phoenix Raceway season finale in November. He posted 10 top-5 and 14 top-10 finishes in his third fulltime Cup season. The Alva, Florida native finished ninth in points.

Chastain Quotes:

How does the Daytona 500 make you feel?

“Daytona has all of this buildup but as soon as you hit the track, it all goes away. Once I’m on the track, its just another race to me that I’m trying to win. The introductions for the Daytona 500 are unique because you have that long runway that goes out in between the fans and you walk out with another driver past the Daytona 500 trophy. I remember walking out for my first Daytona 500 introduction and every one since. The fact that I’m one of the 40 drivers who has a shot to win the Daytona 500 is an incredible feeling. I was a kid sitting in the grandstands not that long ago. Now, I have a shot to win it. There’s only 39 others. I haven’t won it yet but if I do, it will be incredible.” 

What is your 2024 season outlook?

“Sustaining what we’ve accomplished but we also want more. We’ve been able to sustain in 2022 and 2023. So for 2024, we’ll need to evolve. We’ve added more employees, more engineers, Daniel has a new crew chief and we continue to evolve in the Cup Series.”

Suárez Notes

  • Double Duty for Suárez at Daytona: In addition to driving the No. 99 Freeway Insurance Chevrolet in Sunday’s Daytona 500 for Trackhouse Racing, Daniel Suárez will drive Kaulig Racing’s No. 14 Wendy’s Chevrolet in the 300-mile Xfinity Series race at Daytona at 5 p.m. ET on Saturday. The 2016 Xfinity champion made two starts in the series in 2023. 
  • Freeway Insurance: Begins its fourth season with Suárez and Trackhouse Racing and makes its first appearance as the primary sponsor of the No. 99 in the Daytona 500. 
  • Wendy’s: Saturday’s Xfinity race with Suárez driving the No. 14 Kaulig Chevrolet marks the first race in Wendy’s new relationship with Trackhouse Racing. 
  • Daytona: Sunday marks Suárez’s seventh appearance in the Daytona 500. Last year he finished seventh – a career best. 
  • Mexico Series: Suárez won the 150-lap Mexico Series race at the Los Angeles Coliseum on Feb. 3. It was his 11th victory in the series. 
  • New Crew Chief: Matt Swiderski begins his first season as the No. 99 team’s crew chief. The 42-year-old Swiderski led the No. 16 Kaulig Racing NASCAR Cup Series team to two victories over the last three seasons.
  • First Mexican to Win in Cup: Suárez, 32, became the first driver from Mexico (Monterrey) to win in the NASCAR Cup Series on June 12, 2022 at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway. 
  • International Driver: He is one of six drivers not from the United States to win a NASCAR Cup Series race: Shane van Gisbergen (New Zealand), Marcos Ambrose (Australia), Juan Pablo Montoya (Colombia) Earl Ross (Canada) and Mario Andretti (Italy). 
  • Cup Career Highlights: Suárez owns one victory and three Busch Light Pole Awards – Pocono (Pa.) Raceway July 2018, Kentucky Speedway July 2019 and on the road course at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway August 2023. 
  • English is Second Language: Suárez, came to America to race. He did not speak English when he arrived in Buffalo, New York. He is the only Spanish-speaking driver in the NASCAR Cup Series.

Suárez Quotes:

Are you ready for the Daytona 500? 

“Yes of course. You can’t be a driver in NASCAR and not think about the Daytona 500. Every time you go into the tunnel you get a thrill. This is our most important race of the year. It’s not about points or where you finish. It’s about being a Daytona 500 winner.” 

What would a victory in Daytona mean to you?

“Think about it. It’s the biggest race in our sport. It would be my first, Justin Marks first, my friends at Freeway Insurance are going to be our primary sponsor in this race, Pitbull is going to perform the pre-race show, I can go on and on. This would mean a lot to a lot of people. Freeway has been with me a long time and to win a race with Freeway, let alone the Daytona 500 would a reward for all the faith they have shown me over the years. They celebrated with us winning the Mexico race in Los Angeles and that was a blast. I can’t imagine the Daytona 500 win party.”

Are you ready for a return to the Xfinity Series?

“Looking forward to going BIGGIE with Wendy’s on the track Saturday. I’m excited by Xfinity Racing. I’m with a good team at Kaulig Racing and it marks our first race with Wendy’s who is joining Trackhouse Racing this year. I love the Xfinity Series and it’s always fun to get back and race with them.”

It’s been more than a weeks since the Mexico Series victory, how do you feel?

“That was really a great moment for me. I am so proud of the race the Mexico Series put on at the Coliseum and we had so much fun in victory lane. That was really a big deal. I hope one day those drivers get their shot in America like I did.”

Freeway Insurance joined with NASCAR driver Daniel Suárez, the only Mexican driver to win a Cup Series race, and his Trackhouse Racing team in 2021 to ensure everyone knows low-cost car insurance is available to people who need it, regardless of their driving record. Everyone deserves a second chance.

During the last two years, the combination led to a national television and digital advertising campaign featuring Suárez in both English and Spanish, and customer outreach across the nation. Freeway Insurance recognition among NASCAR viewers and the public dramatically increased as millions of television viewers and social media fans watched Suárez on the racetrack and in commercials.

Building on that success, Freeway Insurance announced an expansion of primary sponsorship to 12 races in the 2024 season, including serving as the primary sponsor for Suárez’s No. 99 Chevrolet in the 66th running of the Daytona 500 on Feb. 18 – NASCAR’s most important and viewed race.

Wendy’s will have season-long associate branding on all Trackhouse Chevrolets during the 2024 calendar year, and two Cup Series primary events starting with Shane van Gisbergen at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway in April.

In the Xfinity Series, Wendy’s will be the primary partner for one race during the three-time Supercars champion’s rookie season. As previously announced, Trackhouse Racing has contracted multi-race winning organization Kaulig Racing to field Cup and Xfinity Series Chevrolets for Van Gisbergen. 

Wendy’s will also serve as the primary sponsor in the season-opener at Daytona International Speedway with 2016 Xfinity Series Champion Suárez driving the No. 14 Kaulig Chevrolet.

Trackhouse Founder and Owner Justin Marks

What does Daytona mean to you?

“Every year we leave chilly North Carolina and go down to Daytona where is it warm and humid. That first day that you are down there has such a unique feeling to it. It represents the start of a new season and a new opportunity. That’s what I have always loved about it. You go down there and immediately forget everything from the past. At that moment you are totally focused forward. It’s an historic race track, an awesome race track, but I have always gotten excited because it represents a new season and opportunity to chase dreams.” 

Justin Marks Business Career

  • Marks, born May 25, 1981, is the founder and team owner of Trackhouse Entertainment Group and Trackhouse Racing.
  • He is a co-manager of Marks Family Foundation, with several different philanthropic endeavors. The family, led by father Michael Marks, has been a highly successful private equity leader in the Silicon Valley for years.
  • Before Trackhouse Racing, Marks opened the Trackhouse Motorplex (formerly GoPro Motorplex) go kart racing facility near Charlotte in late 2012. He entered race team ownership at lower levels, including a venture with late owner Harry Scott in NASCAR’s lower rungs, as well as a World of Outlaws team.
  • Marks moved to Nashville, Tennessee in 2020 to set up the corporate headquarters for Trackhouse Racing.
  • The team competed as a single car team with Daniel Suárez in 2021 with its cars housed at Richard Childress Racing in Welcome, North Carolina. 
  • In June of 2021, Trackhouse announced the acquisition of Chip Ganassi Racing’s NASCAR assets, a move that secured two full-time NASCAR Cup Series entries and cleared the path for expansion.
  • In its first season as a multicar team in 2022 working out of its Concord, North Carolina race shop, Suárez and Ross Chastain won three races in 2022. 
  • In 2023, Trackhouse won three times with Chastain winning at Nashville (Tenn.) Superspeedway and Phoenix Raceway, and Shane Van Gisbergen winning the inaugural Chicago street race. 
  • Marks won the 2022 National Motorsports Press Association’s (NMPA) Myers Brothers Award during the 2022 NASCAR Awards in Nashville. The award recognizes individuals and/or groups that have provided outstanding contributions to stock car racing.
  • Marks won the 2022 “Byrnsie Award” from Fox. The award was established to celebrate an individual in the NASCAR Cup Series who showcases the same principles as the late Steve Byrnes embodied — preparation, teamwork and family within the garage area.
  • He is an investor in the Music City (Nashville) Grand Prix Indycar race.
  • Marks along with Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kevin Harvick and Jeff Burton, purchased the Championship Auto Racing Series (CARS) Tour in January. The professional Late Model and Late Model stock car grassroots series competes at local short tracks throughout the Southeast United States.
  • Trackhouse has signed drivers Zane Smith, Connor Zilisch and Shane van Gisbergen to driver development contracts. 
  • In December, Trackhouse announced its entry in the FIM MotoGP World Championship motorcycle racing series.  
  • Marks now splits time between the North Carolina race shop and his home near Nashville where he and wife Erin are raising two daughters.

Racing Career

  • Marks has been a driver for nearly 20 years enjoying sports car success, including factory rides with Porsche, Acura and BMW. He won several times in the Trans Am Series in 2023. 
  • Marks competed in six NASCAR Cup Series races with a best finish of 12th-place in the 2018 Daytona 500. He made 35 starts in the Xfinity Series posting a win, three top-five and seven top-10s.
  • Marks won the Xfinity Series race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Aug. 13, 2016 driving for Chip Ganassi Racing. He drove for Kaulig Racing in the July 1, Xfinity Race on the Chicago Street Course. 
  • Marks competed in 39 races in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series posting four top-10s and capturing two pole awards.
  • Marks joined four co-drivers in winning the 2009 Rolex 24 in the GT division.

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