Connor Mosack is a studious individual. Recently, he graduated from High Point University with a degree in entrepreneurship and was named as one of the university‘s 10 Under 10 young alumni.
It wasn‘t long ago that Mosack picked up racing. He was 18 years old when he first buckled into a racecar. Now, he‘s just 24 and competing in the Xfinity Series.
In 2018, Mosack won the Asphalt Nationals Semi-Pro championship at the Las Vegas Bullring. The next year, he won the Cook Out Winter Heat Pro championship at Charlotte Motor Speedway while also making his CARS Late Model Tour debut at South Boston for JR Motorsports. He spent the 2020 season full time in the series, earning a pair of third-place finishes in 10 starts.
“The first year, I didn‘t know anything and was learning a lot out there having fun,” Mosack told Jayski.com. “When I ran in 2018, that‘s when we started having some success and won [more than 20] races that year. That‘s when we thought maybe this could go somewhere and we took it more seriously and started moving up in late models.”
Mosack continued moving through the racing ranks at rapid pace in 2021, making a combined five ARCA Menards Series starts between multiple divisions. He also competed in the Pirelli Trans Am TA2 Series, finishing the season with 10 top-five efforts, placing third in the championship standings. To this day, his win at Watkins Glen International is his top career highlight.
Mosack, however, wanted a new challenge, so in 2022 he ran a pair of Xfinity Series races on the road courses of Watkins Glen and Portland International Raceway with Joe Gibbs Racing and Sam Hunt Racing. In his series debut with JGR, he qualified eighth at PIR. He also made starts last season in Trans-Am, late model stocks, pro late models, super late models and ARCA.
With all of the movement, he‘s learning on the fly and believes he has to continue moving up divisions at a quick pace.
“Starting later, it forces you to [move up divisions] a little,” Mosack said. “I feel like you‘re not able to get the same opportunities in the Truck Series or Xfinity Series when you‘re in your late 20s. Being 24 now, I don‘t feel like I‘m in a rush to move on to Cup, but to keep running races in Xfinity is where I‘m going to learn the most quickly.”
Prior to the 2023 season getting underway, Mosack was announced to run Sam Hunt Racing‘s No. 24 entry in 20 races. His season debut wasn‘t until the fourth race of the season at Phoenix Raceway, where he finished 24th.
In Mosack‘s first nine starts with the newly formed second full-time team for SHR, he had a pair of DNFs due to crashes. His two top-20 finishes, including a career-best eighth at Portland, were on road courses, which is where he feels most comfortable despite having more experience on ovals.
“Road racing is where I happen to excel,” he said. “I feel like I‘ve ran more ovals than road courses, but road racing has come a little more naturally.”
Sam Hunt, team owner of Sam Hunt Racing, can see promise in Mosack, believing he has a lot of raw speed. It was evident that Moscak would be solid on road courses, as Hunt labeled them his “bread and butter.”
The ovals, however, are where Hunt wants to see some improvement.
“The obvious thing that he‘s got to improve on is finishing the oval races,” Hunt stated. “He‘s fast, but sometimes he oversteps the boundaries of the car and tire. You get some guys that you can‘t get to go faster and you just want them to push harder and harder, where I think Connor has a natural ability to make speed. It‘s just working on his race craft; he hasn‘t raced much at all.
“Personally, I want to see him succeed because he‘s a good person, a good kid that has a good opportunity and he appreciates it and doesn‘t take advantage of it.”
Admittedly, Mosack‘s results have been below his own expectations. Following his wreck at Nashville, Hunt said he was at the team‘s shop on Monday morning at 6 a.m., helping the teardown guys and buying food for the race team.
The speed, though, is evident.
“I feel like I‘ve had a top-12 car everywhere we‘ve been, maybe a little better,” Mosack said. “In the races I felt we were primed to have a good finish, a tire will go down or something mechanically will break. There‘s been a few races where I‘ve made mistakes and can certainly learn from and apply to the next weekend.”
Mosack knew that 2023 was going to serve as a learning year. He‘s green to the series and the car and driving the No. 24 Toyota was an opportunity to build character.
The main goal for Mosack was to get better and learn, as he set no expectations with SHR.
“That was a big reason why we chose to run a bunch of races with Sam Hunt Racing and not try to get more with [Joe Gibbs Racing],” Mosack said. “I‘m jumping into Xfinity probably a little early. Being with a place like Sam‘s is a better place for me to get laps and learn.”
Last week‘s Chicago Street Course race was Mosack‘s first of three starts in JGR‘s No. 19 All-Star car, which has a rotation of drivers. The Charlotte native was impressive in qualifying, placing fourth, and ran inside the top five until experiencing a mechanical woe in the second stage. He was credited with 35th place.
Next up for Mosack with JGR is Pocono Raceway and Road America, both coming in July. The two road courses were places he circled as being competitive — he was at Chicago — and Pocono is a place he finished sixth in ARCA last season.
“I have high expectations,” Mosack said of the JGR opportunity. “The JGR car is really fast and, especially on the road courses, we‘ll have good speed.
“I hope for good finishes, run all the laps and come out of it with a solid top-five, top-three finish and hopefully fight for the win.”
Mosack is trying not to put an exorbitant amount of pressure on himself for Pocono and Road America. But JGR has won a quarter of the series‘ races in 2023.
“Being more precise on how to manage the race, I think that will pay off for when we have the speed that the JGR cars have,” Mosack said.
Mosack‘s next scheduled race is next weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.