NASCAR’s Bubba Wallace Talks Pit Crew, Nashville Troubles and What He’ll Do to Prepare for Road America

by Jonathan Howard

It’s no secret that NASCAR star Bubba Wallace has been unhappy with his crew and their performances throughout the season. Time and time again, Wallace has run into issues that are, in all reality, avoidable. His 23XI Racing crew has jumped the wall too early, left wheels loose, even lost a wheel midrace, and otherwise caused delays that have cost Wallace points, position, and even potential victories.

Last week was another tough one for Wallace and his No.23 Toyota Camry team. They just haven’t put together a complete race, really. Even when he’s gotta fast car, the fastest of the weekend heading into the start at Nashville, these small mistakes cost him every time.

Pit Crew Issue

He was called out by some for his words at his pit crew. However, NASCAR is full of emotions and sometimes harsh words. That’s the reality. For Wallace, he says to FOX NASCAR’s Bob Pockrass, it’s “passion.”

“Passion. Passion, want to win. Need to win, gotta win. Had a team capable of winning, car is capable of winning. So, it just creates the passion. With passion comes frustration.”

He also talked about being in the heat of the moment. When you’re out on the track, in many ways risking your safety and life, it can get frustrating. Those on his team that know, know.

“In the heat of the battle when you talk to your team, they understand. [I] talked to [Crew Chief Robert Barker] Bootie he understands, understands the frustration. That’s the biggest thing, the outside is always going to have a … comment. Hell, I congratulated uh, Cindric in my post-race interview and was getting crap for it saying that I didn’t give him enough credit. ‘Damn alright, I just finished second.’ … But that’s Bubba Wallace for you.”

Sometimes it’s tough to be Bubba.

Bubba Wallace Breaks Down NASCAR ‘Frustration’ and What He Can Do This Week at Road America

The last time Bubba Wallace was on a road course was back in Sonoma with the Cup Series. That’s when Wallace, just ten laps in, blew up the car. Well, it kinda just blew up on its own. That was mostly a freak accident and no one was to blame. It happens sometimes.

During his conversation with Pockrass, he explained what his feelings were like last week.

“I mean frustration is frustration. You want to win. It’s the same passion that I’ve had ever since I started. … Being fast off the truck last weekend was a huge confidence boost for all of us. Continue to say the first half of the season is nothing to brag about at all. So when you come back after a reset, it seems we take ourselves out of races and we gotta stop doing that. I gotta rebound, I gotta stay in it mentally and deliver the best results. So, it’ll be a learning curve for everybody.”

NASCAR can do that to you. Bubba Wallace is set to perform at Road America and will hopefully make it further than ten laps on this road course. In case things do heat up and get intense, Wallace knows what he has to do to prevent a repeat of last week’s rant.

“Just don’t key up. Simple as that.”