Travis Pastrana will reportedly attempt the 2023 Daytona 500 with 23XI Racing

Chris GraythenGetty Images

Legendary stunt driver Travis Pastrana will reportedly attempt the Daytona 500 with Denny Hamlin’s winning 23XI Racing Team. the athletereports Jordan Bianchi that Pastrana will join the team in an additional car that will be used as an open entry, meaning he would have to earn a spot on the grid through the race’s obscure qualifying process.

As a driver in an open entry, Pastrana would be competing for one of only four spots in the 40-car field available to entries that do not participate in NASCAR’s charter franchising system. Two of those four spots will be given to the two fastest open cars in qualifying, while the other two are only available to the best open finisher in one of the two “duel” qualifying races on Thursday before the 500-mile event. Pastrana will be battling for spots in a more competitive field than last year’s event, with returning Jimmie Johnson known to be among the other open entrants.

Pastrana’s potential NASCAR Cup Series debut comes more than a decade after his debut in stock cars in 2012. Pastrana drove a full season of the NASCAR Xfinity Series for Roush-Fenway Racing in 2013, but his stock car career has since largely ended in one-off appearances in the NASCAR Truck Series.

The 23XI Team, a factory-supported Toyota program that has featured Joe Gibbs Racing driver Denny Hamlin and NBA icon Michael Jordan, is entering its third year. The team has won three races in its first two seasons and will drive full-time chartered entries for Bubba Wallace and Tyler Reddick in addition to its open car for Pastrana.

23XI Racing had previously teased the one-off program with a video posted via Twitter on Friday. The video doesn’t name Pastrana, but it does announce the team’s third car and includes a brief shot of what appears to be the back of Pastrana’s head.


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