Final Laps: Bubba Burger 250
Virginia-native Denny Hamlin holds his lead on a late-race restart to get his 11th win in the Nationwide Series.
NASCAR.com runs with Bubba Wallace in Charlotte
RELATED: Bubba Wallace: Helping NASCAR grow one tweet at a time Dressed in a red "Share a Coke with Bubba " T-shirt, shorts, sneakers and, of course, his signature smile, Darrell Wallace Jr . was enjoying a rare off-night on Tuesday in Charlotte, North Carolina. And how did Bubba choose to spend it? By going on a 4-mile run around the city with family, friends, fans and NASCAR.com, of course. Let me explain. Every week the XFINITY Series star tweets out to his thousands of followers asking them to join him on a run. Anybody wanna run tonight?! New location....Charlotte trolley trail 7pm at 9th street! — Darrell Wallace Jr (@BubbaWallace) May 10, 2016 It's no secret that Bubba uses his social media platforms to connect with his fans -- how can we forget that hilarious NASCAR Snapchat takeover with his best friend Ryan Blaney -- so it makes sense he would ask his fans to go running with him. RELATED: Blaney, Bubba win fans over on Snapchat I decided to take him up on the offer. @BubbaWallace — Maggie MacKenzie (@Maggie_MKenzie) May 10, 2016 In short, the Roush Fenway Racing wheelman is speedy and won't take it easy on you, so if you plan on joining him be prepared to put in work. You may even make an appearance on his Twitter. Solid run in the QC tonight! Had some me peeps out, even a biker rode with us! pic.twitter.com/irN6bgR6bm — Darrell Wallace Jr (@BubbaWallace) May 11, 2016 See you next week.
Monster smiles: Bubba makes history, strides at Dover
RELATED: E. Jones prevails for Dash 4 Cash bonus " Results DOVER, Del. -- Darrell " Bubba " Wallace Jr. was all smiles and high fives as he climbed out of his No. 6 Roush Fenway Racing LoudMouth Exhaust Ford on pit road late Saturday afternoon at Dover International Speedway . His runner-up finish to Erik Jones was his best of the 2016 season, best of his NASCAR XFINITY Series career, and best ever for an African-American driver in the series. And it came in a backup car. "Our team, I keep saying it, we never give up," an enthusiastic Wallace said on pit road while receiving plenty of congratulations as people walked by. "It is really a credit to my guys right here for really thrashing this thing. It is unfortunate when you do have to bring the backup car out, like we talked about earlier. "We never give up and we work really hard to get some speed in this baby. I can't thank LoudMouth Exhaust enough for coming on board. This is a good debut for them. They will be on our car in Charlotte. We will go have some fun in two weeks, a home track for us, and hopefully we can get one spot better." Wallace had to work for his effort this weekend. He ran among the top six for most of the race after starting 11th. But he was in a reserve Mustang after crashing his car in opening practice. The 22-year-old has always had a good relationship with Dover, however, and his stellar history at this venue helped launch his NASCAR career. He won an XFINITY Series pole position in his first series start at the track in 2012 and again in 2015. He won the pole position in his first Camping World Truck Series start at The Monster Mile in 2013. And he won two poles here in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East ranks -- winning from the pole position in 2011. "That was big," Wallace said, allowing a smile. "We just have to continue on. We can use this for motivation but I said earlier, we are nowhere near close to where we need to be. We are off on speed and handling and we know that. "We have another off-weekend to find some more for our Ford Mustangs. We have to keep plugging away. We can't get frustrated and just give up on it. We have to keep our heads up and work together to get our team better. "This is a really good day for us. I can go to sleep tonight knowing that we gave it our all, especially after the backup car and all those shenanigans, it kind of erased that -- until I go in Monday and hear all about it again in the debrief." The showing at Dover kept Wallace ranked ninth in the XFINITY championship points. He trails leader Elliott Sadler by 81 points entering the series' next race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in two weeks.
Bubba Wallace: Helping NASCAR grow one tweet at a time
As the sport of stock car racing evolves, a new generation of drivers is poised to grab the reins of NASCAR. And Darrell Wallace Jr . -- better known as " Bubba ," driver of the No. 6 Roush Fenway Racing Ford in the XFINITY Series -- is one of the leaders of that charge. • • • Standing in the Concord, North Carolina-based Roush Fenway Racing museum on a brisk Wednesday morning, Wallace has zero airs about being one of the up-and-coming stars in racing. Dressed smartly in a pullover, flat-bill hat and leather Converse, he arrives promptly, immediately greeting everyone in the crew like old friends. "Time to look pretty now," Bubba tweeted out just prior to an on-camera interview. It has been a busy day for the 22-year-old, who just biked across RFR's campus from the morning pit practice and reveals he's heading to the ZMAX Dragway later in the day before leaving for Bristol Motor Speedway the next morning. But he's young, energetic and ambitious -- with a booming laugh that comes easily. Busy days like this don't seem to wear on him. That same fire and energy translates to the race track. Wallace and crew chief Seth Barbour put together a sixth-place run at the Powershares QQQ 300 at Daytona International Speedway -- a track that's not on Bubba's list of favorites -- and more recently, a career-best third-place at Auto Club Speedway . "We've just been working really hard, never giving up," Wallace said. "Going into Fontana, I didn't expect to finish third -- maybe 23rd the way we were running. … We've just been trying to really make a lot of gains." Nonetheless, it's the races sandwiched between Bubba's strong runs -- Atlanta, Las Vegas and Phoenix -- and a 15th-place result at Texas that the No. 6 driver focuses his attention on when he recounts the early part of the season. "Daytona, Fontana really went our way somewhat. The (others) did not," Wallace said. "We have to focus on why (those) did not and come up with a better game-plan to attack those next handful of races coming up." As Wallace adjusts to his sophomore season, the newly debuted XFINITY Series Chase format adds another element to the competition with its win-and-you're-in format. And Bubba is a fan. "I think it takes the pressure off us, really," he said. "I was talking to (Dale Earnhardt) Junior about it and he said that was the main thing that helped him was kind of relaxing. You get in kind of this consistent run -- obviously if you win, you're in. So, the emphasis is on winning but you can kind of take a step back knowing the points are going to reset as long as you're in the top 12. "So, it's exciting. I'm glad that NASCAR implemented that into the NASCAR XFINITY Series." • • • It's unsurprising Bubba favors the format, as the thrilling nature of the new Chase seems to fit the Bubba Wallace Brand -- something he's constantly building. It's a brand that’s a mixture of sass, humor, heavy metal music and transparency his fans experience through his social-media accounts. It could be a Twitter video of him and best friend/fellow driver Ryan Blaney 's heavy metal cover of a Parkway Drive song or a Snapchat of his plane ride to the track. It could be a tweet that reveals his fear of spiders ("You want an eight-legged thing running at you? Jumping at you? No," he said later) or an Instagram of his hike on the West Coast. No matter the subject, it's pure Bubba . That transparency allows fans to connect with Bubba away from the race track -- a luxury that many fans lack with their favorite drivers. "You get some of the funny tweets that you're not supposed to respond to but you do," Wallace said. "… It's just fun to be able to interact with them (fans). At the track, getting autographs, we get to talk to each other, but that's only two days out of the week. So, throughout, just keep them up with what you're doing." In the process, Bubba is aiding in the sport's growth: He appeared on an episode of the popular television show "American Idol" while in Los Angeles. He suited up for the gridiron and practiced with his childhood favorite Tennessee Volunteers football team. He's befriended rock stars like the band members from Asking Alexandria, bringing them to the race track. Just like that, NASCAR and pop culture have become intertwined. "Aside from what we do for a living, as far as race cars and turning left and going really fast, we have a personal life that we kind of like to show and show fans how we can connect with them," Wallace said. "A lot of fans watch 'American Idol' and I've got a lot of UT fans that follow me, so I've gotten to go to some of those games. And now I (got) to practice with the squad, which (was) really cool and one of the best days of my life. "But we just connect with the fans -- it's all about the fans in this sport," he continued. "We want to keep them engaged and get them to latch on, help build my brand." As the sport evolves, life's natural processes take place: Original, die-hard fans still form the core of NASCAR's audience, but as star drivers retire and up-and-comers make their marks, a younger generation steps into the light in the stands, too. These fans are still passionate -- but they're different. Young stars like Bubba know how to reach them. "I think anything that we do that's exciting, that's fun, that's cool to us is going to attract a new face," Wallace said. "NASCAR's all about bringing new faces in … We're trying to keep a consistent flow through and just trying to make everything exciting." At just 22 years old and at the beginning of a promising career, Bubba represents the future of NASCAR. And that future rocks out to Parkway Drive on the drums.
Bubba gets a moral victory with P2 finish at Dover
Darrell Wallace Jr. talks about overcoming a crash in practice to bring home a second place finish at Dover. Wallace Jr. becomes the highest finishing African American driver in series history.
Suarez, Bubba , Blaney get 24/7 pit crews
Drivers rely on their pit crews for a lot: changing tires, mechanical adjustments, windshield tear-offs, you name it. Some drivers take it to the next level of dependency, though. Just ask Daniel Suarez , Bubba Wallace and Ryan Blaney , who apparently are so reliant on their pit crews, they're there from the moment the day starts, to helping out (a little too much) in the gym and even assisting during lunchtime, too. Our pals at Whistle Sports gave us an inside look at these drivers using their pit crews outside of the car, to some pretty hilarious results. Being a @NASCAR pit crew is a FULL TIME job... ft. @BubbaWallace @Daniel_SuarezG @Blaney @BuffDudes @ScooterMagruder https://t.co/ZETGEtugr4 — Whistle Sports (@WhistleSports) March 17, 2016 Being a @NASCAR pit crew is a FULL TIME job... ft. @BubbaWallace @Daniel_SuarezG @Blaney @BuffDudes @ScooterMagruder https://t.co/ZETGEtugr4 — Whistle Sports (@WhistleSports) March 17, 2016
Bubba on Buescher: 'We're not shaking hands yet'
Darrell Wallace Jr. glad for week off after tussle with teammate RELATED: Weekend in GIFs includes Bubba cooling off Two days after Darrell Wallace Jr . lost a shot at his first NASCAR XFINITY Series win and $100,000 Dash 4 Cash prize at Dover International Speedway , he was still upset over the actions of Roush Fenway Racing teammate Chris Buescher . On Lap 191 of 200, Buescher made contact with Wallace's left front tire in a battle for the lead of the Buckle Up 200 presented by Click It or Ticket . The action sent Wallace to pit road, and he limped to a 17th-place finish while Buescher scored his second win in three starts, extending his points lead over Ty Dillon to 15 points. "There's always two sides to every story," Wallace told FOX Sports 1's "NASCAR Race Hub" on Monday. "Three sides I guess. "Just good thing there's a week off. Got time to settle down and refocus back on the big picture." When asked whether Wallace and Buescher shook hands on Monday, Wallace said, "No, we're not shaking hands yet." The NASCAR Next and Drive for Diversity alum who won the Coors Light Pole Award at Dover sits fifth in points, 49 behind Buescher as one of four RFR drivers in the top eight in the XFINITY Series. The series heads next to team owner Jack Roush's home track, Michigan International Speedway , for the Great Clips 250 benefiting Paralyzed Veterans of America on June 13 (1:30 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM). FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
Buescher, Bubba address Iowa dust-up
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. -- No big deal, says Bubba Wallace. Not an issue, according to teammate Chris Buescher . Move along folks, nothing to see here. There may or may not be some lingering ill feelings but no one’s talking payback. Last week’s late-race contact between the two Roush Fenway Racing drivers has been talked out and put away, both said Friday at Watkins Glen International, site of Saturday’s Zippo 200 (3 p.m. ET, NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR). Buescher, the series points leader for the past 10 weeks, finished outside the top 10 for the fifth straight race after contact between he and Wallace sent the U.S. Cellular 250 at Iowa Speedway into overtime last Saturday night. Wallace, sixth in the points standings, finished 11th. "We’ve been able to show up competitively to a lot of these race tracks and our teammates have done the same thing," the 22-year-old Buescher said Friday morning at WGI. "We’ve been racing around each other a lot and it’s tough, but we’ve got it handled and we’re looking forward to getting into this stretch (of races). "We have it to the point where we’re going to be able to race around each other and not have to worry about anything." Wallace, 21, agreed. Any ill feelings or issues from last week’s finish, he said, have been dealt with and "the focus is on this weekend’s race." Saturday night’s incident was the second of the season for the RFR teammates. At Dover earlier this year, a similar late-race get-together left Wallace with a flat tire and Buescher celebrating in Victory Lane. A five-time winner in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Wallace is still chasing his first XFINITY Series victory. Buescher has three career wins in XFINITY Series competition. "I love seeing that (conflict). I don’t know where it stands this week," JR Motorsports driver Regan Smith said Friday when asked about on-track issues among teammates. "It’s always difficult to race a teammate. We did it last year with myself and Chase (Elliott) running 1-2 for the majority of the season. You want to beat them for pride within your own shop but then you also know the picture, to gain points. … It doesn’t make it any easier. We’re all competitors and … selfish individuals." But, he added, "If it takes one ounce of focus away from what they’re doing, then it’s helping us out and I’m fine with that." Smith is fourth in points. Elliott, the defending series champion, is second.
Piano prank: Keselowski, Bubba fall for Junior's joke
Dale Earnhardt Jr ., piano protégé? That's exactly what he had his 1.35 million Twitter followers thinking for roughly 20 seconds during a short video he posted Monday. These piano lessons been paying off. pic.twitter.com/KNWfdAnC02 — Dale Earnhardt Jr . (@DaleJr) February 22, 2016 Those who watched the entire 23-second clip know that Junior was pulling quite the prank. Two very public followers of his, however, failed to catch on. @DaleJr kudos man. Tough to find the time to learn new things. — Brad Keselowski (@keselowski) February 22, 2016 @DaleJr dude! Hell yeah, that's awesome! Let's throw in some drums and screams.. — Darrell Wallace Jr (@BubbaWallace) February 22, 2016 Bubba quickly realized what he had done, though. @DaleJr damn... DA of the day award goes to me. — Darrell Wallace Jr (@BubbaWallace) February 22, 2016 Don't sweat it, Bubba . You've still got Blaney as your bandmate. WATCH: The Blaney, Bubba jam session
Bubba Wallace, Ryan Reed swap crew chiefs for Mid-ohio
Roush Fenway Racing drivers Darrell " Bubba " Wallace and Ryan Reed have exchanged crew chiefs as well as crews and will being working with their new personnel beginning with this weekend’s NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Complex. Chad Norris, previously crew chief for Reed, will move over to head up Wallace's effort in the No. 6 entry while Seth Barbour, formerly with Wallace, will take over the reins of the No. 16 Ford team. Roush Fenway Racing , co-owned by Jack Roush and Boston Red Sox owner John Henry, fields four full-time NASCAR XFINITY Series teams, as well as three full-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams. Chris Buescher , the organization's third NXS driver, currently leads the series points standings after 20 events. His group, led by crew chief Scott Graves, was not affected by Tuesday’s moves. Wallace, competing for Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award honors, is sixth in points with one top-five and seven top-10 finishes this season. He is a five-time winner in the Camping World Truck Series and has 26 starts in the XFINITY Series. Barbour has one career win as a crew chief in the series, with he and Reed going to victory lane in the season-opening event at Daytona International Raceway. Norris has three career wins in NXS competition -- with drivers Matt Kenseth (2005), Marcos Ambrose ('11) and Bayne ('11). The 2015 season is the second full-time effort for Reed, who has 59 career starts and one victory. He is currently 10th in points. Norris "has a successful history working with several different drivers of all experience levels and we are excited to see Ryan … continue to develop under his guidance," RFR President Steve Newmark said. "At the same time Seth Barbour provides tremendous engineering experience to all of our XFINITY Series programs and will bring great leadership to Bubba Wallace." Newmark said team co-owner Jack Roush "has a history of similar moves, and we have experienced a great deal of success in the past with these types of adjustments. We feel this will provide both teams with renewed energy as we enter the stretch run of the season." Sprint Cup drivers for the RFR group are veteran Greg Biffle , 2011 Daytona 500 champion Trevor Bayne and two-time XFINITY Series champion Ricky Stenhouse Jr . Saturday's Nationwide Children's Hospital 200 (NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR) is scheduled for a 3:30 p.m. ET start.