Just can't wait: 'Bubba' Wallace amped for Martinsville truck race
MAR 29, 2014 8:00a ET
The Camping World Truck Series season began on Feb. 21 at Daytona International Speedway.
After five long weeks of idleness, NASCAR's tough trucks return to action Sunday at Martinsville Speedway (5:30 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1) where rain forced the postponement of Saturday's scheduled on-track activities.
Make no mistake about it: No one is more ready to get going again than Darrell Wallace Jr., who will line up first on the Kroger 250 grid after qualifying was rained out and the field set according to Friday's practice speeds.
The driver nicknamed "Bubba" scored his first career truck win last fall at Martinsville and in the process became the first African-American to reach Victory Lane in a NASCAR national series event since Wendell Scott in 1963.
Now in his second season with Kyle Busch Motorsports, Wallace can't wait for the green flag to drop at Martinsville, where he hopes to end up in the same place -- Victory Lane.
"How long has it been -- like three years since we've raced? That's what it feels like," Wallace said. "My hair has gotten this long and it's horrible since I haven't cut it since Daytona. It's good to be back in the Toyota Tundra here this weekend in Martinsville. I'm going for the repeat. We were fast here in the spring last year, so we're backing that up again. ... We're trying to definitely take home another clock. I'm not that great in telling time so I think two clocks would help that out."
Wallace, of course, is referring to the coveted grandfather clock that Martinsville, one of NASCAR's oldest tracks, awards to its race winners. The now 20-year-old driver hasn't returned to Victory Lane since his last trip to the Virginia short track, but he couldn't be any more upbeat heading into today's race.
And rest assured, he is not about to rest on the laurels of last fall's triumph at the .526-mile Martinsville oval.
"I'm a winner, but I'm a loser, too, because I lost the next race so you're automatically back in the losers bracket, too," said Wallace, a Joe Gibbs Racing development driver and almumnus of NASCAR's Drive for Diversity program.
"That's the tough thing about this sport. We're looking to get back on that list and go for two in a row here at Martinsville."
Wallace also has his sights set on contending for the championship with his Kyle Busch Motorsports team, after finishing eighth in points and recording 12 top-10 finishes in 22 starts last season as a series rookie.
"Going into this season, the confidence level has definitely been there and I'm excited about this year," Wallace said. "I think we're capable -- I know we're capable of more wins, and we just have to put everything in line and go out there and make it happen, and for me to put everything in line and not to wreck.
"We've always had the speed -- my Toyota Tundra was fast each and every weekend of last year, and we're looking to do the same. For me, it's changing the whole game plan from the driver's seat."