“One of the Best”: Bubba Wallace Rallies the Support of NASCAR Insiders After Irrefutable Brilliance Leading to Talladega

Published 09/27/2023, 6:03 PM EDT

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As the race in Texas reached its climax, Bubba Wallace’s destiny seemed well within his grasp. He surged ahead with a career-best 111-lap lead. With just six laps to go, victory seemed imminent, a ticket to the next round of the Cup playoffs almost secure. Unfortunately, a sudden twist of events unfolded on the final restart. In a gut-wrenching moment, Wallace faltered. He admitted, “I choked.”

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The checkered flag waved, and it was William Byron who claimed the victory, with Ross Chastain securing second place. Bubba Wallace had to settle for third. Despite his valiant efforts, this heartbreaking loss left him in a precarious position, P9 in the playoff standings, just 3 points shy of making it past the cutline. The disappointment was palpable as his championship aspirations hung in the balance.

Bubba Wallace’s chance at playoff glory at Talladega

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Starting from the pole position was the boost Wallace desperately needed coming into Texas race weekend. He had been teetering on the brink of elimination in the last two rounds, facing immense pressure to perform. For now, Wallace, along with the other 11 drivers, have no guaranteed spot in the playoffs, except for Byron, who has secured his place with a resounding win at the 1.5-mile speedway.

The pressure is on, and every lap will matter. The next challenge on the calendar? Talladega, a track with special significance for Wallace, as it was here where he has clinched his first-ever career win. It has always been a stronghold for him, a place where he can shine.

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Experts at GoPRNLive couldn’t hold back their praise for Wallace. Lee Spencer, a senior NASCAR writer, voiced her support, saying, “Personally, if I put on my ‘I want the Feelgood story up there,’ it’s Bubba.”

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She is rooting for him to prove the doubters and haters wrong. She went on, Just thinking that I want him to prove the doubters wrong. I want him to prove the haters wrong. I get sick and tired of going to these tracks and hearing the boo birds for no other reason. I mean, I can’t put a finger on it, but he, you know, with the success that he’s had so far in the first four races of the playoffs, I’d like to see the fun continue for the #23 car.”

Wallace’s Talladega mastery – A lesson steeped in patience

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Alan Cavanna, a seasoned NASCAR reporter, echoed Lee Spencer’s sentiments with unwavering support for the 23XI Racing star. Alan’s conviction was clear: he was throwing his weight behind Bubba too. “It’s the story,” Alan began. And, you know, the redemption story and how well he’s improved. But look, throw all that other stuff out. He’s one of the best, if not the best, at Talladega. Probably should have won earlier this season and learned a big lesson, I think, about patience.”

He delved into the specifics of Wallace’s last Talladega stint, highlighting the pivotal moment when Wallace, leading the race, crashed on the final lap. Alan pondered,

“Think about how many points he may have lost by not finishing second, right? He crashed as the leader. A little more patience on that last lap, I think. If he goes back and studies it, we’ve seen it. There are times where you can make a move going into one and two, but you can also, if you get a move made on you, there’s still plenty of time at Talladega to make one in three and four or coming off of four.”

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After a promising Texas run, hope now glimmers brightly for Wallace’s debut entry into the playoffs round of 8. As the crowd holds its breath, we will have to wait and see if he will deliver.

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Written by:

Rashi Shetty

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Rashi Shetty is a NASCAR author at EssentiallySports. Her passion for the sport extends beyond the thrill of on-track racing, as she finds the behind-the-scenes aspects of car development and sportsmanship equally captivating. Her favorite motorsports moment of 2023 is the NASCAR Garage 56 entry at Le Mans.
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Edited by:

Nischal Kandpal

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