Bubba Wallace Suspended After Las Vegas Incident with Kyle Larson


Credit: Debbie Ross for Skirts and Scuffs 

NASCAR issued a one-race suspension to 23XI Racing’s Bubba Wallace after his actions involving 2021 NASCAR Cup Series champion Kyle Larson. 

Wallace was issued the penalty because he crashed Larson on Lap 94 of the South Point 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Additionally, Wallace shoved Larson multiple times after both drivers exited their cars. Both are violations of NASCAR’s Member Code of Conduct in the NASCAR Rule Book.

Wallace violated Sections 4.3.A and 4.4.C & E. Section 4.4.C states “intentionally wrecking or spinning another vehicle, whether or not that vehicle is removed from Competition as a result.”

The incident began after Larson slid up the track and forced Wallace into the wall in Turn 4. Wallace, in return, turned left into the right-rear quarter panel of the No. 5 Chevrolet. The cars of both Larson and Wallace were damaged.

Christopher Bell, who is still competing in the series Playoffs and looking for a ticket to the Championship 4, was an innocent victim who was collected in the process and was unable to continue the race. 

Wallace issued a statement Monday night apologizing for his actions. 

“I want to apologize for my actions on Sunday following the on-track incident with Kyle Larson and the No. 5 car,” Wallace wrote. “My behavior does not align with the core values that are shared by 23XI Racing and our partners, who have played a crucial role in my incredible journey to the top of this great sport.”

NASCAR Chief Operating Officer, Steve O'Donnell, joined SiriusXM NASCAR Radio on Tuesday afternoon to discuss why the sanctioning body responded to Wallace's actions with a suspension.

“Our actions are really specific to what took place on the race track,” O‘Donnell told SiriusXM Speedway host Dave Moody. “And when we look at how that incident occurred, in our minds, really a dangerous act. We thought that was intentional and put other competitors at risk. And as we look at the sport and where we are today and where we want to draw that line going forward, we thought that definitely crossed the line and that's what we focused on in terms of making this call.”

23XI Racing issued a statement on Twitter stating that it aligns with NASCAR’s decision, and they will not appeal the penalty. The organization announced that John Hunter Nemechek will drive the No. 45 Toyota at Homestead. 

“23XI is aligned with NASCAR on the one-race suspension issued to Bubba and we understand the need for the series to take a clear stand on the incidents that took place at Las Vegas Motor Speedway,” the team statement read. “Bubba’s actions are not in keeping with the values of our team and partners. We have spoken to Bubba and expressed our disapproval of how he handled the situation. Bubba has made impressive strides this season and this experience is an opportunity for him to further learn and grow as a competitor in NASCAR.”  


Bubba Wallace Suspended After Las Vegas Incident with Kyle Larson Bubba Wallace Suspended After Las Vegas Incident with Kyle Larson Reviewed by Courtney Horn on Tuesday, October 18, 2022 Rating: 5