Nelson Piquet Jr. to return to NASCAR Xfinity Series at Mid-Ohio

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Former Formula 1 driver and inaugural FIA Formula E champion Nelson Piquet Jr. will return to the NASCAR Xfinity Series next month at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

Piquet raced in NASCAR between 2010 and 2014, winning four races across the Nationwide and Camping World Truck series before turning his attention to Formula E.

Piquet won the first Formula E title last year with NextEV TCR, but could only finish 15th in season two which came to a close last weekend in London.

Announced on Friday, Piquet confirmed that he would be returning to the Xfinity Series – previously known as Nationwide – with Biagi DenBeste Racing for the Mid-Ohio 200 next month.

“I’m absolutely thrilled to be racing in Mid-Ohio next month. NASCAR has been a huge part of my career and it is one of the best championships I’ve ever raced in,” Piquet said.

“My first top tier NASCAR victory was at a road course, at Road America, and so I’m grateful to Biagi-DenBeste for giving me another road course opportunity.

“The Xfinity series is seriously competitive so I’m looking forward to getting there and seeing what we can do.”

Piquet has proven himself to be adept in a number of racing categories, having also entered Global Rallycross and FIA World Endurance Championship events over the past two years.

Piquet also tried to race in the FIA European F3 Championship round at Pau in May, only for the FIA to block the move, believing his entry to be against the spirit of a junior series.

Ken Roczen signs with HEP Progressive Ecstar Suzuki for 2023

Roczen Progressive Ecstar Suzuki
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ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).

“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.

“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”

For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.

“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.

“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”

Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.