If you are a fan of NASCAR, you might have wondered if Bubba Wallace, the driver of the No. 23 Toyota Camry for 23XI Racing, is related to Rusty Wallace, the former NASCAR champion and Hall of Famer. After all, they share the same last name and the same passion for racing. However, the truth is that there is no blood relation between the two drivers, and they just happen to have a common surname.
Who is Bubba Wallace?
Bubba Wallace, whose full name is William Darrell Wallace Jr., is one of the most prominent and successful African American drivers in NASCAR history. He is the only full-time Black driver in the NASCAR Cup Series, and the first Black driver to win in any of NASCAR’s national series since Wendell Scott in 1963. He has six wins in the Camping World Truck Series and 35 top-ten finishes in the Xfinity Series.
Bubba Wallace is also known for his activism and advocacy for racial justice and diversity in NASCAR. He was instrumental in persuading NASCAR to ban the Confederate flag from its events in 2020, following the killing of George Floyd and the subsequent protests. He also received support from fellow drivers and fans after a noose was found in his garage stall at Talladega Superspeedway, which was later determined to be a misunderstanding.
Bubba Wallace joined 23XI Racing, a new team co-owned by NBA legend Michael Jordan and three-time Daytona 500 winner Denny Hamlin, in 2021. He drives the No. 23 car, which is a tribute to Jordan’s iconic jersey number.
Who is Rusty Wallace?
Rusty Wallace, whose full name is Russell William Wallace Jr., is a retired NASCAR driver who competed in the Cup Series from 1980 to 2005. He won the 1989 Cup Series championship and amassed 55 wins, 349 top-tens, and 36 poles in his career. He is also a member of the NASCAR Hall of Fame, the International Motorsports Hall of Fame, and the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America.
Rusty Wallace is widely regarded as one of the best drivers of his era and one of the most popular personalities in NASCAR history. He was known for his aggressive driving style, his rivalry with Dale Earnhardt, and his colorful commentary on TV and radio. He currently works as an analyst for Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
Rusty Wallace has two sons who are also involved in racing: Steve Wallace, who competed in the Xfinity Series and ARCA Racing Series; and Greg Wallace, who works as a crew chief for Team Penske.
Are Bubba Wallace and Rusty Wallace Related?
Despite sharing the same last name and profession, Bubba Wallace and Rusty Wallace are not related by blood or marriage. They have different backgrounds, origins, and family trees. Bubba Wallace was born in Mobile, Alabama, and grew up in Concord, North Carolina. His father is white and his mother is Black. Rusty Wallace was born in Arnold, Missouri, and grew up in Fenton, Missouri. His father was a race car driver and his mother was a homemaker.
Bubba Wallace has said that he finds the fan speculation about his relation to Rusty Wallace amusing, and he even wore a T-shirt that read “Darrell not Waltrip, Wallace not Rusty, Junior not Earnhardt” to poke fun at the confusion. He also said that he respects Rusty Wallace as a legend of the sport and that he hopes to make his own mark in NASCAR history.
According to Nicki Swift , Bubba Wallace and Rusty Wallace did collaborate on a charity event in 2018 to raise money for education and health care services for children. They also appeared together on an episode of NASCAR America on NBC Sports Network.
Bubba Wallace and Rusty Wallace are two successful NASCAR drivers who share a common surname but not a common ancestry. They are not related by blood or marriage, but they do have a mutual respect and admiration for each other. They are both proud representatives of the Wallace name in NASCAR history..