Six years after Connor Mosack’s career began on the quarter-mile at Charlotte Motor Speedway, he returns to his hometrack as a NASCAR national series driver.
Mosack, a Charlotte native, will pull double duty this weekend. Friday night, Mosack will run the No. 18 for Joe Gibbs Racing in the ARCA Menards Series before running the No. 24 in the NASCAR Xfinity Series race Saturday afternoon for Sam Hunt Racing.
“I think each car can help me with the other,” Mosack said. “It’s back-to-back, but you still get time to climb out of each car and kind of talk about what it’s doing and think about it for a little bit, and then you’re able to get back in and try to apply it all.
“I’m looking forward to the ARCA race, just getting laps and learning different lines and where to put the car in clean and dirty air, and I think that’ll be pretty applicable with the Xfinity car, as well.”
Friday will be Mosack’s third start with Gibbs in the series. In his previous two starts this season, Mosack finished second at Daytona and fourth in Kansas. He is slated to run six races for Joe Gibbs Racing.
“Kansas is really wide and has sweeping corners,” said Mosack of his most recent start in the series. “We can actually go wide open, or pretty close to it, in the ARCA car, at least in qualifying. Charlotte has a lot more off-throttle time. It’s narrower and has sharper corners, though it is more banked, so you carry more load there.
“It has different entries, too. The banking comes all at once, where, at Kansas, it’s more of a gradual entry and exit in the corners. Charlotte is more difficult because of how it goes from flat to banked and back to flat again, so it’s easy to lose the car both on entry and exit there.”
A full-time competitor in the Xfinity Series with Sam Hunt’s organization, perhaps a home game will turn Mosack’s fortune around. Mosack is still looking for his first top-10 finish with the team in what will be their seventh start together.
“That test back in January (at Charlotte) probably helped me more than it helped the team,” Mosack said. “It was my first time on an intermediate track in an Xfinity car and we were able to have good speed. We were right there with Kaz (Grala) and Tyler (Reddick) when they were in the car.
“That gave me confidence, and I know what to expect when I go back there. Charlotte is one of the hardest, if not the hardest, intermediate track we go to, so just being able to have laps there is really beneficial.”
Mosack’s career has seen him go from running Legends Cars at Charlotte Motor Speedway to the CARS Tour and the TA2 division of the Trans Am Series. Friday night will be the second time Mosack has run a stock car around at Charlotte in the ARCA Menards Series (he finished fourth in this event last year) before doing so for the first time in the Xfinity Series car the next day.
“Having a lot of friends and family in Charlotte, I don’t feel like it adds any pressure, but it makes you want to do especially well,” Mosack said. “Having everybody there and being able to celebrate with them or have their support before the race, all of that’s really important. It’s also nice to have a good day and be able to just drive 20 or 30 minutes down the road and sleep in your own bed.”