Connor Zilisch: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Connor Zilisch at the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series XPEL 225.

Getty Images Connor Zilisch at the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series XPEL 225.

Meet future NASCAR superstar, Connor Zilisch, self-described “driver of many different race cars.”

1. Connor Zilisch is Just Seventeen

It’s shocking to realize that for all Zilisch’s wins and the number of races he’s competed in, he is only seventeen. Expect more success to follow. In January, 2024, Trackhouse Racing signed the 17-year-old Zilisch to a multi-year development deal. In its official statement, Trackhouse founder Justin Marks said, “I have watched Connor grow from a youngster racing go-karts at the Trackhouse Motorplex to an up-close seat as he beat all of us in the Trans-Am race at VIR (Virginia International Raceway) a few months ago.” Since being signed to Trackhouse, Zilisch raced at the Rolex 24 at Daytona, and this week took pole at the NASCAR Craftsman Truck race at the Circuit of the Americas.

Per his deal with Trackhouse, Zilisch is set to race in the CARS Tour, IMSA, ARCA and Trans-Am series, and the Xfinity Series between 2024-2025. Despite that, Trackhouse’s Marks said “we are going to go slow with Connor and make sure he’s fully prepared as he advances in what we believe will be a long racing career.”

No dollar amount was given for the deal, though it could potentially be in the millions. Zilisch has already won well in excess of $100,000 in prizes and scholarships.

2. Connor Zilisch is a Multiple Race Winner

At just 17, Zilisch’s young career is remarkable. Not just for all his success but equally for the breadth of racing circuits, engines, and builds he’s been successful with. Zilisch has raced for the NASCAR Truck Series, at Daytona, at Sebring, in the Mazda Challenge. Zilisch has raced Mazdas, Camaros, trucks, karts, and won.

Zilisch won four of 10 MX-5 Cup races in 2023. The year prior, he won rookie of the year in the MX-5 Cup Series. Zilisch has won five Trans-Am Series TA2 races. He’s won a Cars Pro Late Model Tour race, and won at kart racing (karting).

3. Connor Zilisch is the First American to Win The Karting Trophy

Might Connor Zilisch abandon NASCAR for F1? In 2020, Zilisch, from Mooresville, North Carolina, became the first-ever American to win the CIK-FIA Karting Academy Trophy. Karting is much more prevalent in Europe — and often a feeder series to Formula 1. Zilisch has even done a ‘shoey’ — that’s standing atop the winner’s podium and drinking champagne (or age-appropriate drink, in this case) from his shoe. Just like multiple F1 race winner, Daniel Ricciardo.

4. Connor Zilisch Loves Social Media

Can you blame him? He’s 17. Zilisch has a Twitter (aka X) feed, an Instagram page, and his own YouTube channel. Zilisch’s online presence is carefully curated, but he still tries to have fun with it whenever and wherever he can.

Zilisch’s YouTube channel, however, rarely gets updated anymore. Most of it is videos from his karting days. The short videos from his early teens, however, provide a glimpse of his racing potential. On his personal website, Zilisch aggregates much of his social media activity.


5. Connor Zilisch Took Pole in His First NASCAR Truck Series Event

Connor Zilisch didn’t just win pole in his very first NASCAR Truck Series race. Zilisch won pole by 0.7 seconds, at COTA. The NASCAR faithful took notice.

Zach Sturniolo, writing for NASCAR’s official site, stated that Zilisch “wows with pole” in his NASCAR Truck debut. “The 17-year-old Trackhouse Racing prospect stormed to the pole position in Friday’s qualifying session at Circuit of The Americas, driving the No. 7 Spire Motorsports Chevrolet to the top spot at 93.012 mph.” In fact, Zilisch’s lap broke the track qualifying record that Ross Chastain set in 2023. Kyle Larson was equally impressed.


Zilisch does not shy away from his talent, nor his accomplishments. In his On Track School bio, Zilisch writes: “Raced go-karts since I was 5 years old. Have won multiple US national championships, a world championship in Italy in 2017 and the first American to win the FIA Academy Trophy championship in 2020.” Zilisch added that he enjoys “wake surfing, sim racing and just picking up golf.” If he keeps winning, golf may have to wait.

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