When Did Bubba Wallace Start Battling Depression? The NASCAR Driver Had Bravely Revealed His Mental Health Battle

Published 06/23/2022, 2:22 AM EDT
LOS ANGELES, CA – FEBRUARY 25: Bubba Wallace is seen at “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on February 25, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by RB/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)

Bubba Wallace is 23XI Racing’s star driver. The Talladega winner continues to improve as a Cup Series driver with every race. However, things were not always as pleasant for the driver. It is widely believed that the driver struggled with mental health issues for a good part of his racing career.

May 28, 2022; Concord, North Carolina, USA; NASCAR Cup Series driver Bubba Wallace (23) during Nascar Cup qualifying at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

With the help of a 2020 YouTube video, we now have a clearer picture of Bubba’s battle with mental health issues. GQ Magazine runs an exciting series where popular celebrities go undercover on various social media platforms. In one of the episodes, we see Bubba Wallace going undercover on Twitter, YouTube, and Reddit to answer his fans’ questions.

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Apart from the mainstream social media sites, the 28-year-old also visited Wikipedia to find, “In 2019, Wallace revealed that he dealt with and continues to deal with depression for most of his racing career.” 

After reading the statement out loud, Wallace said, “Part of that is true, yes. Did I battle it most of my racing career? No.” He added, ‘It has been the last, I’d say, two or three years where I have kinda gone through that.” 

It is unfortunate that the driver had to deal with mental issues. Especially considering the stress one might have to go through being a part of one of the most popular racing series.

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The driver recently revealed he is his own biggest critic, saying, “You know, when I make a mistake, I’m super hard on myself. And sometimes it’s okay to have a little bit of self-motivation, but when you stoop as low as I do, it’s tough to climb back out of.”

“But I think I’ve graduated from that point in my life hopefully. I haven’t made a big enough mistake to let my mind tell me otherwise.”

However, things seem to have turned around for him.

Bubba Wallace talks about the light at the end of the tunnel

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Talking to GQ, Wallace admitted that he is a person who likes to keep his problems to himself. However, he also revealed that changing his approach a bit and letting it out help him see how many people suffer from issues like depression. As he has lived through this condition himself, he stands with each and every individual who suffers from, in his own words, the “horrible disease.”

FONTANA, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: Bubba Wallace, driver of the #23 Wheaties Toyota, waves to fans as he walks onstage during driver intros prior to the NASCAR Cup Series Wise Power 400 at Auto Club Speedway on February 27, 2022 in Fontana, California. (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images)

To conclude, the driver said, “The light is always shining bright on the other end. Never give up. Never give up.”

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This is incredibly inspiring from Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan’s driver. Fortunately, we can see the result of his victory in the long battle with mental health problems. All in all, it was quite brave of Bubba to come out and share his journey with others.

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Hetul Katyal

126 articles

Hetul Katyal is an F1-NASCAR web stories creator at EssentiallySports. Currently pursuing his degree in Journalism from the Delhi College of Arts and Commerce, he is an avid supporter of Carlos Sainz and Scuderia Ferrari. Hetul always looks forward to the paddock going to Baku, but the part of F1 that excites him the most, is seeing the drivers tackle the 'Raidillon' at Spa.

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