NASCAR Star Bubba Wallace Reveals ‘Unforgettable Day’ When Michael Jordan Texted Him for 23XI Racing

Published 01/17/2021, 9:10 AM EST
FONTANA, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 29: Bubba Wallace, driver of the #43 Victory Junction Chevrolet, stands by his car before qualifying for the NASCAR Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)


A year ago, not even Bubba Wallace would have imagined that he would be running the No. 23 car for a new NASCAR team, owned by one of the greatest sportspersons ever, in Michael Jordan. However, that is the reality, and Wallace is less than a month away from making his debut for 23XI Racing.

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Wallace still remembers the day of the announcement quite clearly. Naturally, his phone was buzzing with numerous calls and messages as the world learned of the new development.

Among those many many texts, there was one from an unknown number that caught Wallace’s attention and excited him the most. It was from none other than Jordan himself, and the NBA legend sent across a nice congratulatory message to young Wallace.

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“I’ll never forget the day we announced,” Wallace said in a recent interview.

CHARLOTTE, NC – APRIL 28: Basketball legend Michael Jordan looks on during the pro-am for the Quail Hollow Championship at Quail Hollow Country Club on April 28, 2010 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

What Michael Jordan said to Bubba Wallace in his text message

“I was getting a lot of phone calls and text messages from family and friends, and then an unknown number pops up with a simple text message, ‘Hey, glad to see this thing came through. Let’s get after it and go have fun. MJ.’  I’m like, that’s pretty cool right there,” Wallace expressed.

The message from Jordan and his affirmative response to roping in Wallace as the team’s driver is, more than anything, a great indicator of Jordan’s trust in the 27-year-old driver. Wallace understands that, and he is excited to have a chance to prove his mettle.

The former Richard Petty Motorsports driver understands the task ahead and is ready to put in the efforts needed.

DAYTONA BEACH, FL – JULY 05: Bubba Wallace, driver of the #43 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet, stands by his car during practice for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 5, 2018 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Wallace understands there is work to be done

“It’s super dope! I’m excited, but we have a lot of work to do. Brand new team, getting everything going, getting all of our parts and pieces together to be successful is gonna take a lot of work from us,” Wallace said further.

Bubba Wallace already has a reputation as an overachiever in the NASCAR Cup Series. He had ordinary equipment at RPM in the No. 43 car compared to some of the top runners in the series, but he performed better than expected, more often than not.

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At 23XI Racing, Jordan has already promised him much better resources and equipment, and an alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing and manufacturer Toyota is a massive step in that direction. One thing is certain, the Wallace-Jordan-Denny Hamlin combination will be one to savor.

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Aayush Majumdar

1006 articles

Aayush Majumdar is a NASCAR content strategist, a Tennis Writer, and a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. He is well-tenured as a tennis and NASCAR writer, with over 900 articles across both sports. After pursuing a Post Graduate program in Sports Management, Aayush explored various roles in Sports Media, including a Sports Reporting role at a leading English daily.

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