To put it simply, Bubba Wallace had a rough day on Sunday. Atlanta was a slog as he wrecked early and fought back all afternoon. Fighting back got him to the checkered flag in a severely damaged No. 23 DoorDash Toyota Camry, but just a P27 finish.
His initial reaction to the day was pride in his team. They had to fight just as hard as he did to get his car to the finish line. A P27 is much better than being one of the eight cars that DNFd. If anything, it will help when they face adversity later in the season in a winning situation.
When you wreck in the first dozen laps or so, it’s just hard to make any progress back. Clearly, Bubba Wallace did some thinking on the way home. At almost 1 in the morning, the NASCAR driver tweeted out some updated thoughts.
“Long car ride back to reflect… Rookie ass mistake. Simple as that. Cota.”
If you’re Bubba Wallace and his team you have to look at the bigger picture right now. It’s a long season, there has been speed from the 23 and 45 cars this season at different points, let’s see how that shakes out.
As far as his road course record goes, it is arguably one of the worst in the Cup Series. However, Wallace showed out at the Indy and Charlotte road courses last season. He went P4 and P7, respectively at those events in 2022. If he can avoid a mechanical failure, which he had in the other four road course races last season, he might surprise folks.
Bubba Wallace Battled After Early Mistake
There is something to be said about Bubba Wallace’s change in attitude this season. He went through the highest of highs and lowest of lows within weeks of each other last year. Winning at Kansas and then the Kyle Larson incident and his one-race suspension. It seems that he’s learned from that.
Bubba from previous years might have just told his team to put the car in the garage after his early blunder. He might have let the nerves and emotions get the best of him and make another mistake right after the first one. This time, he rebounded. His car wasn’t able to overcome the damage really, but he finished the race.
Based on Indy and the Roval last year, I think that Wallace can get a strong finish at COTA. However, these new cars have new packages and noses this season, so it won’t be the same as in 2022. Joey Logano proved that with his Las Vegas and Phoenix performances this year versus last.
Bubba Wallace is in a position to make some noise this season. He has a season-high finish of P4 from Las Vegas. It seems that his road course and short-track racing have improved. So, let’s see him put together another complete race like Vegas and see where he lands.