Earnhardt Jr., Harvick part of new ownership group buying late-model racing series CARS Tour

MOORESVILLE, N.C. — A group of notable NASCAR drivers and team owners have joined forces to purchase the Solid Rock Carriers CARS Tour, a late-model racing series.

NASCAR Hall of Famer and JR Motorsports co-founder Dale Earnhardt Jr., NASCAR Cup Series driver Kevin Harvick, former driver Jeff Burton, and Trackhouse Racing co-owner Justin Marks announced their acquisition of the series on Monday.

“This is a dream come true for me,” said Earnhardt Jr. in a news release. “I’m a huge fan of the CARS Tour and local short-track racing. The competition, the tracks, and the drivers are some of the best around.

“These regional series are vital to the quality of racing you see at the top level. Jack (McNelly, CARS Tour founder) has done a tremendous job establishing the CARS Tour as a preeminent series, and I’m thrilled to be part of its future.”

Aside from the ownership transition from McNelly, the CARS Tour will remain unchanged. The 2023 schedule is set with 19 race weekends, and McNelly and his staff will continue to oversee operations and track events.

Earnhardt Jr., Burton, Harvick, and Marks are all former or current drivers.

“Late Model racing has always been a passion of mine and I want to ensure short-track asphalt racing and the CARS Tour continue to grow and succeed,” said Harvick. “I look forward to sharing the responsibility with this like-minded group of racers.”

Founded in 2014 as a continuation of the former Pro Cup Series, the CARS Tour enters its ninth season in 2023. The tour features both Pro Late Models and Late Model Stock Cars competing at the same track on the same night.

The CARS Tour has produced several notable drivers who have built successful careers on the national stage, including Josh Berry, William Byron, and Ty Gibbs.

The CARS Tour season kicks off on March 11 at the Southern National Motorsports Park in Kenly, N.C., and wraps up on Nov. 4 at the Caraway Speedway in Sophia, N.C. Other tracks on the schedule include Hickory Motor Speedway (April 22 and July 29), Florence Motor Speedway (March 25 and Aug. 19), and the Tri-County Speedway in Granite Falls (May 27 and Oct. 21).

Here’s the full schedule:

March 11 — Southern National Motorsports Park, Kenly, N.C. (LMSC/PLM)

March 25 — Florence Motor Speedway, Florence, S.C. (LMSC)

April 22 — Hickory Motor Speedway, Hickory, N.C. (LMSC/PLM)

May 5 — Ace Speedway, Altamahaw, N.C. (LMSC/PLM)

May 17 — North Wilkesboro Speedway, Wilkesboro, N.C. (LMSC/PLM)

May 27 — Tri-County Speedway, Granite Falls, N.C. (LMSC/PLM)

June 3 — Langley Speedway, Hampton, Va. (LMSC)

June 10 — Dillon Motor Speedway, Dillon, S.C. (PLM)

June 17 — Dominion Raceway, Thornburg, Va. (LMSC)

June 28 — Caraway Speedway, Sophia, N.C. (LMSC/PLM)

July 8 — Wake County Speedway, Raleigh, N.C. (PLM)

July 29 — Hickory Motor Speedway, Hickory, N.C. (LMSC/PLM)

Aug. 11 — Ace Speedway, Altamahaw, N.C. (LMSC)

Aug. 19 — Florence Motor Speedway, Florence, S.C. (PLM)

Aug. 26 — Wake County Speedway, Raleigh, N.C. (LMSC)

Sept. 9 — Goodyear All American Speedway, Jacksonville, N.C. (LMSC)

Oct. 7 — South Boston Speedway, South Boston, Va. (LMSC/PLM)

Oct. 21 — Tri-County Motor Speedway, Granite Falls, N.C. (LMSC/PLM)

Nov. 4 — Caraway Speedway, Sophia, N.C. (LMSC/PLM)

For more information on the CARS Tour, go to carsracingtour.com.

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