Bubba Wallace might not have won the Bristol dirt race on Monday, but he did earn his boss's respect for his effort.
Bubba Wallace is quickly becoming NASCAR's most polarizing driver, and while it helps the young star grab attention, it can also be used against him. Unfortunately for the former Camping World Truck Series driver, this lesson came back to bite him at the Bristol dirt race.
Bubba Wallace was able to move up from 19th to seventh in the first stage and finished there in the second stage as well. Not only did this net him eight stage points to add to his total, but it also showed just what he was capable of when the chips were down.
With that being said, it didn't last, and Bubb Wallace spun out towards the middle of the final stage. Even worse, however, was the fact that NASCAR didn't call a caution for the spin, leaving him to lose several positions. It was also very hard to watch for a team to put in all that effort just to finish 27th.
Bubba Wallace has potential to become a top racer
“They knew we were there. Not the result @DoorDash or this @23XIRacing racing team deserved after grinding and making improvement after improvement," Bubba Wallace tweeted after coming up short during the Bristol dirt race. "Heads high, forward progress, we’ll catch our break."
Keep in mind that this is the same team that had a strong showing in the Daytona 500, but was wrecked out late in the event. Furthermore, Bubba Wallace has been struggling to stay in the top-ten since the season opener at Daytona International Speedway, making it a very difficult season for him.
Denny Hamlin, who finished in third in the historic event and is part owner of 23XI Racing, commended his driver for his efforts though. Now that might not seem like much after having another subpar day, but knowing that your team is behind you has to mean something while they navigate this difficult period.
At the end of the day, it's putting races together that's going to prove the most to NASCAR fans, but Bubba Wallace had a good showing before his incident. He also showed just how well 23XI Racing can do on equalizer-type tracks, making him a favorite heading into Talladega Super Speedway in a few weeks.