Bubba Wallace Wins Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway

by Nick Geddes

Bubba Wallace is a winner in the NASCAR Cup Series for the second time in his career. Wallace crossed the checkered line first in Sunday’s Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway.

Wallace held off his boss Denny Hamlin to win, racing in the No. 45 car vacated by 23XI Racing teammate Kurt Busch. He becomes the 18th different winner this season and the second non-playoff driver to win during the playoff slate.

Wallace led 58-of-267 laps en route to his first victory of the 2022 season.

“What are they going to say now? Let’s go! Hell yeah,” Wallace said as he crossed the finish line.

Wallace’s victory comes after a few close calls during the second half of the season. He picked up four-straight top 10s, including a second place finish at Michigan after starting the race on the pole. But today, Wallace finally pulled it off — and shut up plenty of people who doubted him along the way.

Bubba Wallace Plays Spoiler at Kansas

Sunday’s race was the second Cup Series playoff race. Wallace played spoiler for the playoff field, just as Erik Jones did last week at Darlington. Hamlin, who entered the race third in the points standings, surely helped his case to stay above the cut line with just once race remaining before 4-of-16 drivers are eliminated.

Kevin Harvick, meanwhile, is officially in crisis mode. After finishing 33rd at Darlington, the 2014 Cup Series champion needed a good performance. It was anything but that. Harvick had trouble early and finished 36th. It’s now a “Hail Mary situation” next week at Bristol for Harvick to keep his championship hopes alive.

“Yeah, it is what it is,” Harvick said after exiting early. “We were racing to win anyway today, so that is what we will do again next week.”

This is a developing story. Check back with Outsider for updates.