Pit crew problems tormented Bubba in last week Cup Series race at Nashville,sparking a sudden radio exchange between crew chief Bootie Barker and Wallace.
Earlier this week during an episode of NASCAR Race Hub, Hendrick Motorsports Vice President Chad Knaus and former driver Jamie McMurray discussed Wallace’s setbacks this season and particularly what the driver had to say to his team at Nashville.
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Both agreed that the 28-y-o driver needs to take a different approach moving forward with his pit crew.
Bubba’s 23Xi teammate Kurt Busch, this week came in defense of him explaining that the cause of the issue is 23XI Racing is facing on Pit Road this season is down to Joe Gibbs Racing.
“They’ve had a lot of problems on pit road,” Chad Knaus said. “We’ve talked about that in the past. I don’t like the way that came across. Look, I’ve lived it. I can say it because I’ve done it. I’ve lashed out at Jimmie (Johnson). Jimmie’s lashed out at me. I’ve gone through all this and nothing right there is beneficial.
“I think getting upset and saying don’t talk to me; you just can’t do that. Say it, don’t push the button. And that’s one thing that Jimmie and I finally got to the point where we understood we just can’t air our dirty laundry on the radio because it’s just really difficult to manage those situations. Because nobody on that team wanted that to happen. I can promise you that.”
Bubba Wallace came into the Nashville Cup Race last weekend full of confidence hoping to kick start at poor start to the season.
Wallace had the fastest car in practice, however, the his car got out of shape in qualifying and he started 30th. He made his way to seventh at the end of the first stage.
The 2010 Daytona 500 winner, Jamie McMurray agreed with his co-host’s opinion on NASCAR Race Hub.
“It was a little aggressive, for sure,” the 2010 Daytona 500 winner said. “But you know, he’s frustrated. They’ve had their fair share of issues. If you go back, they had all these issues before the break. And I heard Bubba say this weekend, you get the off-weekend, everybody gets re-energized, and then they come out, and they have a fast car. And they have that issue again.
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“First off, I thought Bootie did an exceptional job not losing his mind on Bubba as well, knowing that’s not going to make the situation better. From Bubba’s perspective saying that, it’s such a mental aspect for the pit crew guys when you beat them up, it’s not going to help them the next pit stop. And Chad said it, they didn’t do that on purpose. It’s an accident.”