Bubba Wallace, driver of the No. 6 Roush Fenway Racing Ford Mustang, looks at his second full-time NASCAR XFINITY Series season as one of growth and maturity after a successful rookie campaign in 2015.
“Looking back on last season, there was a lot to take away from it,” said Wallace. “It was a blast and I’m very thankful for the opportunity from (team owner) Jack (Roush) and everybody at Roush Fenway and everybody at Ford. To carry the Ford banner in the XFINITY Series is a great honor. I’m just ready to get back going in Daytona.”
Closing the 2015 season seventh in the championship standings, Wallace hopes to improve in 2016 on the heels of three top-fives and 18 top-10s, including a best finish of third in Chicago in Sept.
“Everybody is itching to get back to the race track,” added Wallace. “(Crew chief) Seth (Barbour) and I have been talking about ways to be better as a team this season and to be stronger and smarter than ever. We have to look at the big picture every race and be sure to not put ourselves in a spot that could hurt us. That’s what Chris (Buescher) did so well last year and what helped them win a championship. There’s really a lot that goes into it in order to have the championship mentality, especially now more than ever with the new Chase format. That adds a whole new level of excitement and intensity.”
Sitting atop the pit box for Wallace in 2016 is crew chief Seth Barbour. Barbour, who won the 2015 season opening XFINITY Series event at Daytona International Speedway with Roush Fenway teammate Ryan Reed, was paired with Wallace for the second-half of the 2015 season.
“I’m really looking forward to working with Bubba again this year,” said Barbour, who is also a two-time XFINITY Series champion as the lead engineer for Roush Fenway teammate Ricky Stenhouse Jr. in 2011 and 2012. “We ended 2015 on a pretty good note and I think we will be able to pick up right where we left off come Daytona in February.”
The 2016 NASCAR XINIFTY Series season is set to begin at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2016.