Biography of NASCAR Racer Bubba Wallace

Bubba Wallace

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When African American Darrell "Bubba" Wallace Jr. won the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Martinsville Speedway in October 2013, it signaled a new era in NASCAR—one where the sport truly embraced and cultivated a sense of diversity within an industry not always known for tolerance.

That’s not to say that NASCAR was behind on its diversity program, but there wasn’t a defining character akin to Jackie Robinson or Roberto Clemente yet.

Between the success of Kyle Larson and Bubba Wallace, the NASCAR Driver for Diversity program finally had its figureheads and spokespeople. Those who hope to blaze a similar path have role models to follow.

About Bubba Wallace

Nicknamed Bubba, his full name is Darrell Bubba Wallace Jr. He was born on October 3, 1993 in Mobile, Alabama. He belongs to the Roush Fenway Racing team, but his previous teams include Kyle Busch Motorsports and Joe Gibbs Racing.

Wallace's hobbies and interests include music, Sim Racing, social media, photography, and basketball.

Background

Wallace is the son of a white father and African-American mother and was born in Mobile, Alabama. Now he is a resident of Concord, North Carolina. The Wallaces still have family in Theodore, Alabama.

He grew up with a love for motorized vehicles and wanted to race them at an early age. By 9 years old, he was already competing across the Southeast in Bandolero cars and Legends following a successful karting career.

Early Career

In 2006, his first Legends season, he posted phenomenal results, including 11 wins, 27 top-5s, and 34-top-10s in 38 total starts. Remarkably, he began racing Late Model Stock Cars in the now-defunct United Auto Racing Association, competing in the final 5 races of the 2008 season.

Having received his full-bodied stock car experience in a Late Model Stock Car, Wallace moved into the NASCAR ranks in 2010, graduating to the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East with Joe Gibbs Racing and Revolution Racing.

Awards

In what has become a trend for Wallace, he set records in becoming the NASCAR Pro Series East’s youngest winner and the first African-American to win when he did so at historic Greenville-Pickens Speedway in South Carolina. In 2011, he finished second in the championship standings and in 2012 he finished seventh before announcing his intent to move to the NASCAR national touring ranks.

XFINITY and Trucks

Wallace made his full-time Truck Series debut in 2013 and became just the fourth African-American to compete in the tour for the full schedule, finishing 12th in the season-opener at Daytona International Speedway—his first start at the legendary Florida superspeedway. Amongst his accomplishments, Wallace posted his first career pole at Dover International Speedway and scored his first career national touring victory at Martinsville.

He totaled five victories on the tour before moving full-time to the XFINITY Series with Roush Fenway Racing in 2015.

Future

Like everyone who comes up through the stock car ranks, Wallace has his sights set on competing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

His strengths as a driver include an authentic personality. He isn’t afraid to speak his mind when something goes wrong on the track or behind the scenes in person, in front of a camera, or on social media. He has a hard-charging driving style, however, which sometimes makes him susceptible to accidents.