How 23XI Racing is turning into an engine for growth in NASCAR

HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. — Less than halfway through their first season as NASCAR team owners, Michael Jordan and Denny Hamlin look poised to make the sport’s first major investment in a racing headquarters in more than a decade. It’s one of several ways — along with an emphasis on diversity and strong appeal to corporate sponsors — the Jordan-Hamlin pairing could provide much-needed momentum to an industry that calls the Charlotte region home.

Jordan and Hamlin started 23XI Racing (that’s “twenty-three eleven,” a mashup of Jordan’s basketball jersey number and Hamlin’s race car number) this year after signing driver Bubba Wallace as a free agent. Hamlin, who remains an active driver as part of Joe Gibbs Racing, is a minority partner in Jordan’s startup NASCAR venture.

The retired basketball star and the NASCAR driver befriended one another as Hamlin, an avid basketball fan, became a familiar courtside presence at Charlotte Hornets games. Jordan bought the local NBA team in 2010.

Hamlin has taken the wheel, steering plans for a new 23XI Racing headquarters anticipated to cost $9 million to $16 million and span 60,000 to 90,000 square feet. He described assembling the project as equivalent to a Class A office building with ample warehouse space. This office, though, would house two to three race teams, cars, parts, pit crews and more.

However, Hamlin said several important factors must be resolved before moving forward.

Read the full story here about the vision for the team and its impact on the region and the sport.