Bubba Wallace isn’t satisfied

DAYTONA, FL - FEBRUARY 14: Bubba Wallace (#23 23XI Racing McDonald's Toyota) being interviewed during Daytona 500 Media Day on February 14, 2024 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, FL. (Photo by Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

It’s hard to argue with Bubba Wallace’s past performance at Daytona International Speedway.

In 13 starts at the 2.5-mile track, Wallace has posted an admirable average finish of 12.9 and has completed 2,303 of a possible 2,346 laps (98.2 percent). He has led 28 laps and has been in the front of the field more often than not.

In his best two DAYTONA 500 races, Wallace finished second to Austin Dillon by 0.260 seconds in 2018 and second to Austin Cindric by 0.036 seconds in 2022.

Despite the enviable statistics, Wallace isn’t satisfied with his DAYTONA 500 results.

“A little inconsistent, but we always find our way to the front and showing good pace on speedways,” he said on Wednesday. “We’re still a few moves away from getting that first Daytona 500 win, but I feel the most prepared I’ve ever been, but you never know.

“You could be out leading and get turned. That’s what happened to me last year. You never know when another person in the field is going to make the wrong move, so you have to be aware.”

In last year’s race, for example, Wallace was in good position in the closing laps before disaster struck.

“I came across the line fifth or sixth taking the white flag,” he said. “(Kyle) Larson was stuck in the middle, and I could’ve went down to him, but the 10 (Aric Almirola) turned the 67 (Travis Pastrana) right into Larson, which turned me.

“Should’ve, could’ve, would’ve. It’s so hard until it’s too late.”