5 drivers who could attempt the next Memorial Day Double

All eyes are on Kyle Larson as the NASCAR Cup Series champion prepares for the Memorial Day Double. Who could be next?
Kyle Larson, Arrow McLaren, Hendrick Motorsports, Indy 500, IndyCar
Kyle Larson, Arrow McLaren, Hendrick Motorsports, Indy 500, IndyCar / SOPA Images/GettyImages
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No. 4 - Scott McLaughlin

One of the most talented drivers to come to America from overseas in recent times has to race in NASCAR at some point, right?

Following a stunning career in Australia in the V8 Supercars championship that saw him win the 2019 Bathurst 1000 and become the first driver to ever win his first three titles in succession, Scott McLaughlin moved to America in late 2020 to compete in IndyCar.

Since then, he has already racked up five wins, six pole positions, 14 podium finishes, and a career-best third place in the championship in what is a truly ultra-competitive racing series. The Team Penske driver has proven to be one of the fastest drivers on the grid.

But is IndyCar where he'll stay for years and years to come? As much as he has loved racing in this series, McLaughlin has always dreamt of racing in NASCAR, as he wrote in his book, Road To Redemption, in 2019.

"I'm asked a lot about America and my NASCAR ambitions.... If I was able to tick off a championship and a Bathurst win in the next half-dozen years or so I would consider doing something else. If the opportunity came up to try something Stateside, I'd jump at it. And NASCAR is the obvious goal. NASCAR is a dream of mine and Roger Penske and the team know that."

Scott McLaughlin

A few things help his case for NASCAR racing. First off, he has that very valuable connection with Roger Penske, the man for whom he currently drives in IndyCar. Penske also owns a very successful NASCAR team, with two former champions in Joey Logano and Ryan Blaney already driving two of his three cars.

Secondly, McLaughlin has already driven a NASCAR Cup car before, doing a demo run in Logano's 2018 Ford Fusion on the streets of the Gold Coast in Australia, giving him short but valuable experience.

His lengthy experience in Supercars should also help his transition a ton, given the fact that the Next Gen car is very similar in weight, grip, and power to what he was used to. Fellow Kiwi Shane van Gisbergen already proved in 2023 with his stunning NASCAR win on the streets of Chicago that the differences are not as massive as one may think and that performing well is very possible.

Even if McLaughlin's career trajectory remains in IndyCar, doing a one-off race in NASCAR is far from out of the question, especially if it is a crown jewel race such as the Coca-Cola 600. Surely Penske would have zero issue with him trying to pull off a Memorial Day Weekend sweep for the team at Indianapolis and Charlotte.