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“Kicked in the N*ts” – Corey LaJoie Desperately Tries To Stick His Foot in the Closing Door After Kenny Wallace’ Controversial ‘Made Matters Worse’ Claim

Published 06/07/2023, 9:14 AM EDT

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It was a dream come true for Corey LaJoie when he was called in as a substitute driver for the #9 Chevrolet, filling in for the sidelined Chase Elliott. The opportunity to drive the most coveted seat in the Cup Series was straight out of a fairy tale. However, as the race unfolded, LaJoie’s performance fell short of expectations, leading to controversial remarks from veteran driver Kenny Wallace.

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In 2020, Corey LaJoie expressed his interest in being a replacement for the retiring Jimmie Johnson at Hendrick Motorsports. Although his proposal didn’t materialize, fate presented him with another chance three years later. As he stepped into the #9 Chevrolet for one race, LaJoie saw it as a golden opportunity to showcase his skills and make a lasting impression. Since the expectations were high, so was the pressure.

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In a recent interview with SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, Corey LaJoie reflected on the experience, acknowledging the challenges he faced while expressing his determination to bounce back. He stated, “It was experience, I thought that I was ready and I still think and know that I am ready. And I am also ready to accept that, hey, sometimes you get kicked in the n*ts, and you gotta freaking get up and get back to work. “ LaJoie remains resilient and determined to prove his capabilities in future races.

He acknowledged that setbacks are a part of the journey and expressed gratitude for the support he received from fans. He further added, “There’s a lot of support from the fans that makes me feel good and obviously the people that matter are tuning in and listening and you know they were kind of along for the journey and sparks made me feel good yesterday right, he sends me, ‘Hey, the last 2 years at the gateway, the 7th car finished last, we blew up last year and the 7 car broke a rotor this year and the 9 car finished 21st so, you know, that made me feel not terrible and I think the other three cars weren’t superb.” 


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LaJoie recognized the level of professionalism and structure in top-tier teams, attributing their sustained success to their refined processes, “It was definitely a really cool opportunity to just see how those guys operate and the level at which they approach the weekend and how structured it is and how refined that process is, it’s pretty clear why they have the sustained success and it’s cool to be a small part of that process this weekend” 

Despite the hype surrounding his substitute role, Corey LaJoie failed to deliver the expected results. He finished in 21st place, far from the desired outcome. Known for his straightforward and sometimes controversial remarks, Kenny Wallace didn’t hold back in expressing his disappointment.

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Kenny Wallace Criticizes Corey LaJoie Amidst Disappointing Performance

Kenny Wallace drew a comparison between LaJoie and Carson Hocevar, the substitute driver LaJoie’s #7. While Hocevar showed promising performance before encountering mechanical issues, LaJoie struggled to make progress. Wallace highlighted the significant difference in their positions during the race, with Hocevar running in 16th place while LaJoie lagged behind in 28th. Unfortunately for LaJoie, even when Hocevar’s race took a turn for the worse due to a brake rotor failure, his race was already ruined.


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Wallace shared his advice to LaJoie, recounting what Dick Trickle had once taught him, “Stay Corey, and let the car do the talking.” However, LaJoie’s performance did not live up to expectations. Opportunities like the one LaJoie had are rare, and when they slip away, they may never come again. Unfortunately, LaJoie failed to seize his chance. Kenny Wallace expressed his disappointment in LaJoie’s performance, noting that in today’s world of racing, drivers may only get one shot at success.

It is crucial for drivers like LaJoie and Hocevar to consider the insights provided by veterans like Wallace. One race does not define a career, but the landscape of racing is evolving. Drivers have limited chances to prove themselves and secure long-term success. While LaJoie’s experience with the #9 Chevrolet may not have yielded the desired results, it is essential to learn from the setbacks and strive for improvement in the future.


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Corey LaJoie may have stumbled in his recent opportunity, but it should not overshadow his potential and determination. As he continues to refine his skills and learn from his experiences, he remains hopeful for future opportunities to showcase his talent and make a lasting impact in the world of NASCAR.

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Dasnoor Anand

245 articles

Dasnoor Anand is a NASCAR writer at EssentiallySports who brings a fresh perspective to the world of motorsports. She has always had a knack for writing and a love for cars. For years, she has been a devoted follower of motorsports and is particularly intrigued by the inner workings of Formula 1 teams as well as Stock Car Auto Racing.

Edited By: Ranvijay Singh