Bubba Wallace Jr. has taken it upon himself to be a polarizing figure in NASCAR in the modern day and age. It is often said that something which is about to revolutionize the world is often polarizing. Whether you like him or not, Wallace Jr. has proved to be just that. The sole African-American driver in the Cup Series, the highest echelon in stock car racing, made waves in 2020 when he spoke out against topics that were otherwise regarded as normal by fans and teams.
His activism against inherent racial inequality and discrimination in the sport caught the world's attention as he wore a 'Black Lives Matter' T-shirt and car livery during race weekends. The entire fiasco surrounding his activism against the Confederate Flag, a symbol of NASCAR since its inception, almost reached dizzying heights as he was allegedly threatened at Talladega Superspeedway with a noose in his garage.
Bubba Wallace Jr. has also not shyed away from topics such as depression and mental health, and urged people to speak up about it. Suffering from depression himself, Wallace Jr. wanted people to seek help for the same.
The 2021 Yellawood 500 at Talladega Superspeedway saw the 23XI Racing driver clinch his first ever victory in the Cup Series. The race delayed by rain saw Wallace Jr. celebrate in ecstatic fashion after the official announcement. This marked the second-ever win by an African-American in the Cup Series, after a certain driver by the name of Wendell Scott won in Jacksonville, Florida 57 years ago.
While Bubba Wallace Jr. is not directly related to Wendell Scott, his historic win last year did open up a conversation with Scott's son Franklin Scott. Wallace Jr. admitted to hearing Franklin's father's voice from heaven during the final laps of the race.
Bubba Wallace Jr. and Ty Gibbs to exchange car numbers for the remainder of the season
23XI Racing drivers Bubba Wallace Jr. and Ty Gibbs will be switching numbers as the NASCAR playoffs begin to help aid the team win the owners' playoffs. The #45 Toyota Camry TRD was driven by Kurt Busch until he suffered a concussion earlier this season due to which Ty Gibbs filled in as his replacement.
Going into the playoffs, the team thinks Wallace Jr.'s experience in the car could help them win the owners' playoffs title while Gibbs takes up the #23 Toyota. Bubba Wallace Jr. managed to drive the #45 Camry to a P9 finish in the first playoff race at Darlington Raceway yesterday.