Sometimes, you just know. That’s how NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace felt in the days coming up to his first Cup Series win.
He went on to make his premonition come true, taking the checkered flag at Talladega back in October. By winning the Yellawood 500, Bubba Wallace became the first black NASCAR driver to win a race since Wendell Scott in 1963.
Recently, Wallace sat down with Pop Culture to talk about the historic win. And, apparently, there’s some debate over who made the prediction.
“I had a feeling Thursday or Friday,” Bubba Wallace said. “Amanda [Wallace’s girlfriend] claims that she told me that we were going to win, but I had a feeling Friday before the race, this is definitely going to happen. Just everything felt right.”
Of course, it probably doesn’t matter to the young driver who exactly had it first. Becoming a Cup Series winner is all that matters.
As with any NASCAR race, it didn’t come without some turbulence. The win was an unconventional one for Wallace, as it had to be called early due to weather. But for Bubba, the weather held less weight than the chaos of Talladega.
“And so there was moments throughout the race though,” Bubba Wallace continued. “I was like, this is not what I had envisioned. We were running 25th, but it’s Talladega, you never know what could happen with that last run there.”
Bubba Wallace on Kurt Busch, 23XI and Michael Jordan
Interestingly enough, Bubba got a little bit of assistance from his upcoming teammate: Kurt Busch.
Busch is 23XI Racing’s newest Cup Series driver, but back in October, he was still finishing up his time with Chip Ganassi Racing.
“We made a late charge to the front,” Bubba Wallace said. “And actually got some help from Kurt [Busch], so it was kind of cool. A little bit of foreshadowing of what we can do with our future. But yeah, I think just being able to relive that moment and look back on what we were able to do that day is really cool.”
It’s clear that the young driver is excited to have a friend out there. The other thing he can’t help but express is his pride in getting Michael Jordan his first win as a NASCAR owner. The legendary basketball player took a chance with Wallace and NASCAR, and it’s already starting to pay off.
“I was able to get MJ his first win and NASCAR as an owner,” Wallace said. “So just proud of everybody and their efforts. Obviously, we’ve added Kurt to the team, so we’ve added a lot of people. The expansion of our team has been great, got a lot of new smart faces that are going to be a part of our team moving forward. So just excited about the opportunities, I think the sky is the limit for us and there is so much potential left in our team to figure out what we need to do as a whole, to figure out this new car with NextGen coming out.”