Wallace Finishes 11th in 2016 Season Finale
HOMESTEAD, Fla. (Nov. 19, 2016) – Bubba Wallace, driver of the No. 6 Leidos Ford Mustang, recorded an 11th-place finish in the NASCAR XFINITY Series season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Saturday night.
“We had a really fast Leidos Mustang on the long runs,” said Wallace after the race. “We just needed some help to get going early in a run. But I want to thank everyone that worked on this Leidos team this season for all of their hard work. Everyone worked their tail off to give us the best chance to run well. Now it’s time to enjoy some downtime this offseason and get ready to get back after it in February in Daytona.”
Wallace took the green flag for the final event of 2016 from the ninth position after advancing to the third round of knockout qualifying on Saturday morning. Early on Wallace reported to crew chief Seth Barbour that the Leidos Mustang was very tight rolling through the corner. This handling condition shuffled Wallace back to 12th before the first round of green flag pit stops on Lap 78.
After pitting for four tires and a chassis adjustment Wallace returned to the track in ninth and maintained his track position until a Lap 88 caution gave crew chief Barbour another opportunity to make adjustments. The driver of the Leidos Mustang took the ensuing restart from ninth but was shuffled back to 16th as the tight-handling condition returned.
The Roush Fenway Racing driver continued to fight for position until a caution on Lap 136 gave Wallace a chance to hit pit road for more adjustments. Returning to the track in 12th, Wallace only needed two laps to improve six positions to sixth before settling into ninth just prior to the caution coming out once again on Lap 158. After pitting for the last set of sticker tires during the caution, Wallace took the Lap 163 restart from 17th.
In the closing stages, Wallace continued to push forward, improving to 12th before the final caution came out with just 10 laps remaining.
In the end, Wallace would survive a frantic restart to take the final checkered flag of the season in the 11th position.